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November 16, 2012

Department on Aging hosts annual Memory Loss Conference during Alzheimer’s Awareness Month
Two day conference Nov. 16 & 17 in Springfield targets families of Alzheimer’s patients, caregivers and professionals

SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Department on Aging (IDoA) today opened the 17th Annual Memory Loss Conference to address issues of dementia, such as Alzheimer’s disease, and related disorders.  The two day conference is November 16 and 17, at the Crowne Plaza in Springfield.  Today’s agenda is geared toward professionals in the areas of healthcare, aging, and caregiving.  Tomorrow’s agenda is for the general public, especially care partners, friends and family of individuals with a memory loss disorder.  The two day conference is held in conjunction during the national observance of Alzheimer’s Awareness Month.  

“With the numbers rising of people impacted by this disease, there is a greater need for resources.  That’s one of the reasons we present this conference each year.  Attendees will learn a lot during the sessions, but there are also resources available to help people and their families,” said IDoA Director John K. Holton, Ph.D.

Alzheimer’s is the most common form of dementia.  It is an incurable neurological disorder that destroys the brain’s memory cells and causes problems with thinking and behavior.  Alzheimer’s progressively gets worse over time can lead to death.  There are more than five million people, worldwide, living with Alzheimer’s disease.  And that number is predicted to nearly double every 20 years.  In Illinois, more than 210,000 are estimated living with Alzheimer’s or related dementias.

Co-sponsors of this year’s conference are Southern Illinois University (SIU) School of Medicine’s Center for Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Disorders, St. John’s Hospital, and the Alzheimer’s Association.  Each offers information and help to cope and combat Alzheimer’s and other related dementias.

For more information about programs to assist older adults in Illinois and their caregivers, call the Department on Aging Senior HelpLine at 1-800-252-8966 or for TTY (hearing impaired use only) call 1-888-206-1327.


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