Kim applauds bill to establish state Alzheimer’s, dementia office

HARRISBURG, June 27 – A bill that would establish a state office to respond to Alzheimer’s, dementia and related disorders passed the House today, announced state Rep. Patty Kim, who co-sponsored the measure.

House Bill 2400 would create a permanent Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Disorders Office and establish a 28-member advisory committee, both within the Pennsylvania Department of Aging, to coordinate across state agencies, advocate policy and leverage resources to better respond to the unique and complex needs of those living with Alzheimer's and other dementia.

“Supporting specialized care can significantly enhance the quality of life for dementia patients, providing them with the necessary medical, psychological, and social support through a public-facing office,” Kim said. “Public health initiatives can promote early diagnosis and intervention, which can slow disease progression and improve outcomes.”

By 2025, the number of Pennsylvanians living with Alzheimer’s is expected to increase to 320,000 with the total Medicaid costs to care for them expected to increase by over 10%.

“Because patients eventually are unable to care for themselves, Alzheimer’s and dementia are major cost drivers in the state’s Medicaid budget,” Kim said. “Our taking a proactive and public approach to this specialized aging care could help us get ahead of the curve in fighting and planning for it.”