BY CAROL MCILMURRAY
SUFFERN – When New Yorkers go to vote for president next year, Sen. David Carlucci (D-38) wants you to check ‘yes’ on an $1 billion bond initiative to fund Alzheimer’s research in NYS. The first public forum, a roundtable of lawmakers and neuroscientist, announced the proposed legislation at Rockland Community College on Monday, Oct. 26.
US Reps Nita Lowey (D-17) and Steve Israel (D-03) and Assemblyman Charles Lavine (D-13) joined the panel along side lead Alzheimer’s scientist from Nathan Kline Institute, Mount Sinai Center for Cognitive Health and Feinstein Institute to discuss the future referendum.
“There are over 5 million people in the United States who live with Alzheimer’s, and every 67 seconds another family member, friend or co-worker is diagnosed,” said Senator David Carlucci. “Through this $1 billion bond initiative, resources will be specifically allocated to fund imperative research… one day curing, Alzheimer’s.”
Carlucci continued, “As the Baby Boomer generation, one of the largest populations, enters retirement, it is imperative that we act before its too late…Alzheimer’s does not just take a toll on the caregivers and loved ones, there is also a large financial toll.”
By 2050 the US estimates cost of treating Alzheimer’s and other dementia, will rise from today’s $226 billion to $1.1 trillion. Alzheimer’s and dementia related Medicare spending are expected to account for a third of Medicare spending by 2050, up from the present one-fifth of spending.
If the referendum passes, lawmakers and scientists believe it would New York State would become the premier hub for Alzheimer’s research, creating jobs by funding research and clinical trials to make headway with the still misunderstood and untreatable disease.
“The financial cost of the disease has never been higher,” said Rep. Steve Israel. “With the cost of Alzheimer’s to our country expected to skyrocket, this bonding initiative will make New York a national leader in funding robust research to end this devastating disease.”
The proposed referendum will ask New Yorkers to approve $100 million per year for the next 10 years to be allocated toward funding Alzheimer’s research in New York State.
The next public forum on the issue will be held in Albany in the coming weeks.