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Public Statements

National Alzheimer's Project Act

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Madam Speaker, I ask unanimous consent that all Members may have 5 legislative days in which to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material in the Record.

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I yield myself such time as I may consume.

Madam Speaker, I rise in strong support of S. 3036, the National Alzheimer's Project Act, as amended.

Last week, the Subcommittee on Health in the Energy and Commerce Committee held a hearing on Alzheimer's disease and the many challenges associated with it.

Alzheimer's is an irreversible progressive brain disease that slowly destroys memory and thinking skills and eventually even the ability to carry out the simplest tasks. Alzheimer's can affect every part of the brain and rob its victims of their very lives and dignity, and it is fatal.

Alzheimer's is estimated to be the sixth leading cause of death in our country. The disease, which is estimated to affect as many as 5.1 million Americans, has a devastating impact, not just on families but on our national economy. It is projected that the national costs associated with caring for those with Alzheimer's exceeds $172 billion each year, with the figure expected to rise to $1 trillion by 2050. These costs represent the burden on Medicare, Medicaid, private insurance, caregiving, and out-of-pocket costs for families. Of this figure, $123 billion can be attributed to Medicare and Medicaid alone.

The National Alzheimer's Project Act will require the Secretary of Health and Human Services to create and maintain a national plan to overcome Alzheimer's disease. It will also create an advisory council on Alzheimer's research, care, and services.

I want to thank the sponsor of this legislation, Representative Markey, for his tireless leadership on this bill. He is also the co-chair of the congressional task force on Alzheimer's disease, and he works hard on all aspects of trying to find a cure and to do research with regard to Alzheimer's.

I urge my colleagues to support the National Alzheimer's Project Act today.

I reserve the balance of my time.

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Madam Speaker, I urge passage of S. 3036, and I also yield back the balance of my time.

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