New Educational Materials on Alzheimer’s Disease Available to Public, Health Professionals

New educational resources are now available throughout Nebraska for family, friends and health professionals who care for people who suffer from Alzheimer’s disease.

Videotapes, slides, books and pamphlets are available for free check out at resource lending libraries in Beatrice, Kearney, Norfolk, North Platte, Scottsbluff, Lincoln and Omaha. The libraries were established to provide a variety of free resources on Alzheimer’s disease to health professionals and the public.

The materials are distributed by the University of Nebraska Medical Center through a grant funded by the National Institute on Aging called, “Reaching Rural Communities with Alzheimer’s Education.” The purpose of the grant is to increase public education of Alzheimer’s disease in rural areas for the detection, diagnosis and management of Alzheimer’s, said Betty Foster, Ph.D., gerontologist and co-project director of the grant.

The financial, social and emotional costs of Alzheimer’s in Nebraska are high. By the year 2000, an estimated 76,000 people in Nebraska will have Alzheimer’s disease enough to fill UNL’s Memorial Stadium. Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive, degenerative disease that attacks the brain and results in impaired memory, thinking and behavior.

It’s estimated that 40,000 people in Nebraska currently have Alzheimer’s disease — with more than 12,400 living in nursing facilities. In Nebraska, family members bear most of the $373 million annual cost of caring for their loved ones. Those family members who provide home care for their loved ones pay a heavy physical and emotional price.

New books available in the libraries and directed toward the general public are: How to Care for Aging Parents: A Complete Guide; Your Name is Hughes Hannibal Shanks: A Caregiver’s Guide to Alzheimer’s. Two books available for health professionals are: Clinical Symposia on Alzheimer’s Disease, and Clinical Practice Guidelines, a state-of-the-art summary of dementia assessment, treatment and management.

For more information, call resource lending libraries in these locations: Beatrice Beatrice Public Library, Laureen Riedesel or Connie Dak, (402) 223-3584 Kearney Good Samaritan Hospital, Karen Crocker or Vicki Wirth, (308) 865-7091, or Joe Blankenau, (308) 236-2177 Lincoln Alzheimer’s Association, (402) 420-2540 or 1-800-487-2585. Norfolk Northeast Neb. AAA, (402) 370-3454 or 1-800-672-8368 North Platte West Central Agency on Aging, (308) 535-8195 or 1-800-662-2961 Omaha Alzheimer’s Association (402) 572-3010 or 1-800-309-2112. Scottsbluff Aging Office of West Nebraska, (308) 635-0851.