New California guidelines to aid early Alzheimer’s diagnosis

With the looming Alzheimer’s tsunami is poised to overwhelm our medical system in the coming decades, it’s encouraging to read that California is taking steps to address the issue proactively.

New state and federal guidelines have allowed California to set up a two-pronged approach to tackling Alzheimer’s. New Medicare guidelines effective this past January allow coverage for doctors to assess their patient’s cognitive decline. This would allow the patient and their families to start planning for dementia-care early.

Even better, with earlier diagnosis,  more effective treatments can be used to slow the decline.

The other prong of this approach comes via the California Department of Public Health and new Alzheimer guidelines to educate all medical personnel on early symptoms of the disease which leads to an earlier diagnosis.

It seems to me that California’s proactive strategy is not a nice-to-do but a must-do not only for them but throughout the entire country.

It’s good for the patients but also for California’s bottom line. California’s Medicaid will pay $3.4 billion for Alzheimer’s care this year. Keeping the costs in check is necessary for the state, and the rest of the country for that matter, to financially manage the effects of this devastating disease.

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