WASHINGTON, Dec. 18, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Alzheimer's Association, the leading advocate for federal Alzheimer's disease research funding and caregiver support, highlighted the historic $350 million increase for Alzheimer's disease research funding in the FY2016 budget, signed into law today by President Barack Obama.
"On behalf of over five million Americans living with Alzheimer's and their over 15 million caregivers, this funding cannot come a moment too soon," said Harry Johns, president and CEO of the Alzheimer's Association. "Congress has answered our call and the voice of our hundreds of thousands of advocates with a bold, strategic investment that is a necessary next step in our country's journey to end the Alzheimer's epidemic."
This marks the largest increase ever for federal Alzheimer's research funding—a nearly 60 percent increase over FY2015 funding levels. This bipartisan effort was spearheaded by Senate Appropriations Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies Subcommittee Chairman Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) and Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-Wash.), and by House Appropriations Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies Subcommittee Chairman Tom Cole (R-Okla.), Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Thad Cochran (R-Miss.) and Ranking Member Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.), and House Appropriations Committee Chairman Hal Rogers (R-Ky.) and Ranking Member Nita Lowey (D-N.Y.) oversaw the inclusion of this pivotal increase in the final negotiated agreement.
The Alzheimer's Association has led researchers to document the scientific needs and opportunities that stand ready to be addressed with additional funding, advanced awareness and increased concern, and organized hundreds of thousands of advocates across the country who have worked relentlessly to ensure their message was heard and action was taken.
A report from the Alzheimer's Association, based on an economic model created by an independent research firm, projects that Medicare spending on people with Alzheimer's disease will more than quadruple in just over a generation to $589 billion annually in 2050. This analysis showed that a treatment delaying the onset of Alzheimer's by just five years would save Medicare $345 billion in the first 10 years alone.
"Those of us on the front lines of this fight to end Alzheimer's know that we need to stay on the offensive. Congress and the President should build on this progress and continue to listen to the leading medical experts and provide them with the resources next year and beyond to prevent, slow and ultimately develop a cure for Alzheimer's disease," said Johns.
Alzheimer's disease is the only cause of death among the nation's top 10 that cannot be prevented, cured or even slowed. Today, there are more than five million Americans suffering from Alzheimer's disease along with their more than 15 million caregivers.
The Alzheimer's Association is the leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer's care, support and research. Our mission is to eliminate Alzheimer's disease through the advancement of research, to provide and enhance care and support for all affected, and to reduce the risk of dementia through the promotion of brain health. Our vision is a world without Alzheimer's. For more information, visit alz.org.
SOURCE Alzheimer's Association