African Americans & Alzheimer's Disease


Current reports state that Alzheimer’s disease (Alzheimer’s) is the sixth leading cause of death for all Americans and the fourth leading cause of death for older African Americans. Additionally, it notes that African American elders are two to three times more likely to have Alzheimer’s compared to white Americans. With evidence of this magnitude, we realize investment to stop, prevent, or cure Alzheimer’s must be accelerated.

There is a clear and urgent need to promote informed decisions about health and dementia-related, preventive behavior in the African American community. The Goizueta Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center (ADRC) serve the African American community through educational initiatives, screening, and increased detection efforts. The ADRC also produces culturally sensitive educational materials that are consistent with several objectives of the National Alzheimer’s Project Act (NAPA) signed into law by President Obama.

Over the years we have used established innovative strategies to provide information and education to the African American community. We focus on early detection and diagnosis issues related to caregiving and developments in research. We strive to reduce racial disparities by:

  • Disseminating information to the community about risk factors for cognitive impairment that include how to identify early warning signs of memory loss
  • Differing cognitive screening opportunities to facilitate the diagnosis of disorders that impair thinking
  • Providing continuing education hours for nurses, social workers and allied health care professionals

Through internal and external support, the Goizueta ADRC has gained traction and momentum to effect changes in knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors. This enables individuals to become proactive and informed consumers regarding their own cognitive health.

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