Alzheimer’s, the most common form of dementia, is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States and is the only disease of the top 10that cannot be prevented, cured or even slowed.
An estimated 5.3 million Americans currently have Alzheimer’s, with 5.1 million being age 65 and older. Not only does Alzheimer’s take a devastating toll on the individual, but it also impacts the caregivers. In 2014, friends and family of people with Alzheimer’s and other dementias provided an estimated 17.9 billion hours of unpaid care. These caregivers suffer with high stress, depression and increased health issues of their own. ¹
Knowing all of this, Guardian Atlanta was honored when asked to speak at a recent Alzheimer’s support group meeting at one of our communities.
Lori Newcomb, our pharmacist consultant, gave an informative presentation that provided caregivers and family members with the most current information about medications that should and should not be used for people with the disease. Discussions consisted of which medications are most widely prescribed, why they are used, and which should be reviewed for possible discontinuation. Additionally, attendees listened to information on the side effects, interactions, and behaviors that can result from over-prescribing.
As an additional benefit for the group, Guardian offered an in-depth medication review for each of the pharmacy’s clients. The client’s family member will now able to take the reviews to their physician for a discussion on medications and how to better improve the patient’s quality of life.
As the number of Alzheimer’s victims continues to grow, so does Guardian Atlanta’s dedication to providing support and education to our clients, caregivers and their families. For more information on Alzheimer’s or our efforts, please contact Lori Newcomb at 404-309-4958.
¹ Source: Alzheimer’s Association (www.alz.org)