HEALTHY AGING / HEALTHY BRAIN
Healthy Aging / Healthy Brain
Healthy aging involves maximizing physical, mental, emotional, and social well-being, while recognizing that aging often is accompanied by chronic illnesses and functional limitations, including lifelong conditions.
Healthy aging may be defined by using three components:
- promoting health, preventing injury, and managing chronic conditions;
- optimizing physical, cognitive, and mental health;
- and facilitating social engagement.
Over the past decade, NACDD led or contributed to activities focused on increasing the capacity of state and territorial health departments to effectively promote healthy aging and improved quality of life for adults and their caregivers. NACDD activities served to link state, tribal, and territorial health departments and other partners who share a common interest in the promotion of healthy aging.
NACDD Action on Healthy Aging and Brain Health
Integrating Alzheimer’s Messages into Chronic Disease Programs
This project is funded by the CDC’s Alzheimer’s Disease and Healthy Aging Program through the CDC Center of State, Tribal, Local, and Territorial Support and managed by NACDD. CDC recognizes that strategies for chronic disease risk reduction show the best evidence for also reducing the risk of Alzheimer’s Disease and related dementia. The purpose of this project is to adapt existing chronic disease risk reduction messages to include information about how these behaviors can also reduce the risk for cognitive decline. The target chronic disease topic areas include heart health (blood pressure control), diabetes, tobacco, nutrition and physical activity.
The adapted messages will include information about how behaviors related to these topics can also reduce the risk for cognitive decline. This purpose is consistent with the call to action in the most recent version of the Healthy Brain Initiative Roadmap, which is to integrate best available evidence about brain health and cognitive decline risk factors into existing health communications that promote health and chronic disease management for people across the lifespan.
RESOURCES FOR CAREGIVERS
This project is funded by CDC’s Division of Cancer Prevention and Control through the CDC Center of State, Tribal, Local, and Territorial Support and managed by NACDD. This project examines non-traditional cancer risk factors to develop innovative resources to empower public health practitioners to put evidence-based cancer prevention strategies into action in their communities using a lifespan approach. The second year of this five-year project examines Caregiver Stress as a key focus area for cancer prevention.
- Administration for Community Living serves as the lead Federal agency to increase access to community supports, while focusing attention and resources on the unique needs of older Americans and people with disabilities across the lifespan.
- The AARP provides resources and information for caregivers and their families.
- The National Alliance for Caregiving conducts research, does policy analysis, develops national best-practice programs, and works to increase public awareness of family caregiving issues.
- The Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO) is the national nonprofit organization representing public health agencies in the United States, the U.S. Territories, and the District of Columbia, and nd offers case studies and policy recommendations to support caregivers.
- National Indian Council on Aging, Inc. has prepared The Savvy Caregiver in Indian Country, a Trainer’s Manual is designed for use by all American Indian and Alaskan Native people caring for an elder with memory loss and thinking problems.
RESOURCES & REPORTS
Project Summaries from the 2015 Healthy Brain Initiative Grantee: Arizona, California, Hawaii, Illinois, Mississippi, Oregon, Puerto Rico
Self-Reported Increased Confusion and Memory Loss and Co-Occurring Conditions Among Adults Aged 60 and Older, by State
AR CA FL HI IA IL LA MD MI NC NE NH NY OK SC TN TX UT WA WI WV
Self-Reported Confusion and Memory Loss Among Adults Aged 60 or Older, by State
ARCA FL GA HI IA IL LA MD MI NC NE NH NY OK SC TN TX UT WA WI WV
- The Alzheimer’s Association is a leader in advancing research care and support for persons affected by dementia.
- The Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) series is prepared by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and is the agency’s primary vehicle for scientific publication of timely, reliable, authoritative, accurate, objective, and useful public health information and recommendations.
- The State of Aging and Health in America provides a snapshot of progress in promoting prevention, improving the health and well-being of older adults, and reducing behaviors that contribute to premature death and disability.
Healthy Brain Roadmap Series:
Critical Issues Briefs:
Subjective Cognitive Decline (SCD) is the self reported experience of worsening or more frequent confusion or memory loss. It is a form of cognitive impairment and one of the earliest noticeable symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias. SCD can have implications for living with and managing chronic disease, or performing everyday activities like cooking or cleaning. Because SCD is self-reported, it does not imply a diagnosis of cognitive decline by a health care professional.
NACDD and CDC collaborated to develop a series of Healthy Aging Briefs that examine several aspects of healthy aging: caregiving for family and friends, subjective cognitive decline, and coronary heart disease and stroke.
HEALTHY AGING INTEREST GROUP
The NACDD Alzheimer’s Disease Interest Group is a forum that addresses the emerging issues related to Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias. This group meets quarterly in efforts to advance evidence-based services and supports for individuals living with dementia and their caregivers. Members learn from each other about innovative ways to implement the Healthy Brain Initiative Public Health Road Map based on their state’s resources and supports. In addition, national speakers such as NACDD, CDC, and the Alzheimer’s Association provide updates on what is happening at the federal level. We encourage all states and U.S. territories to participate. If your state or territory is not yet represented on the NACCD Alzheimer’s Interest Group, please contact Thea Griffin at email@example.com or at (518) 473-5376.