[McLean, VA] August 25, 2021 – The State of Maryland’s Virginia I. Jones Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Disorders Council invite the community to participate in one of two public forums to share comments on its recently released draft of goals for the updated Maryland State Plan on Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Disorders. The virtual forums will be held on August 30 at 10 a.m. and on September 1 at 12 p.m. 

“These draft goals, an update on the2012 State Plan, were formed by a multi-stakeholder Council appointed by Governor Hogan,” said Eric Colchamiro, Alzheimer’s Association Director of Government Affairs for Maryland. “Public feedback is essential so that this plan best meets the needs ofMaryland residents with Alzheimer’s disease and related disorders,as well as their families and caregivers.”

The Virginia I. Jones Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Disorders Council were authorized by the General Assembly In October 2013 to continue the work of the Maryland Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Disorders Commission with a charge was to develop and monitor the 2012 State Plan. The Council continues to lead efforts to improve and enhance the quality of life and support, and services for individuals living with Alzheimer’s disease and related disorders and their families by promoting and expanding the availability and accessibility of home- and community-based support and service programs.

Councilmember Evie Vander Meer lost her husband Mark to younger-onset Alzheimer’s. “As a caregiver to my husband diagnosed with dementia, I experienced the full range of issues, gaps, and challenges that came with caring for him from age 60-65 yrs,” said Vander Meer. “The more barriers I experienced and resulting heartache I began to long for a voice where I could shed experiential light on what made the journey easier and what made it exasperating in trying to guard the dignity of my loved one.”

Vander Meer encourages the community to share their comments on the proposed goals. “As a member of the Council I represent the input and voice of dementia caregivers. Your voice is needed in formulating this Strategic Plan. Please attend one of the sessions. Listen for the many steps forward and the earnest work done by a table of lay and professional people whose lives are devoted to helpingMaryland advance in its dementia practices.”

A draft of the goals can be viewed here. Individuals interested in attending and providing comments can register for the sessions using the following links:

Those unable to attend may submit their comments in writing no later than Friday, Aug. 27 to Maryland.ADRDplan@gmail.com.

For more information, contact Eric Colchamiro at ercolchamiro@alz.org

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