Alzheimer’s disease is a significant and growing health and safety issue for older adults and those who care for them. As part of efforts to be a community capable of addressing this issue, the City of West Hollywood has signed on to the Women’s Alzheimer’s Movement 5-Step Agenda for Cities, a movement founded by Maria Shriver to raise awareness of women’s increased risk for Alzheimer’s and to educate the public about protecting brain health.
“I’m proud that the City of West Hollywood is again the vanguard in our leadership on prevention and preparedness programs,” said City Councilmember John Duran. “With work already under way to address Alzheimer’s and other dementias, the City of West Hollywood was the first municipality to commit to the Women’s Alzheimer’s Movement 5-Step Agenda for Cities to become more Alzheimer’s and dementia friendly.
“West Hollywood launched its five-year ‘Aging in Place, Aging in Community Strategic Plan’ in 2016 with a goal to increase the city and community’s focus on the services, programs, and policies that promote health, independence, and civic participation across a person’s lifespan.”
Some milestones for the Women’s Alzheimer’s Movement 5-Step Agenda include:
— Convening a local summit on Alzheimer’s. In November 2017, West Hollywood, the office of L.A. County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl, Jewish Family Service of Los Angeles, and Alzheimer’s Greater Los Angeles co-sponsored “Matters of the Mind: A Community Forum on Understanding and Responding to Alzheimer’s and other related Dementias.” The forum was for health care and social service professionals, business owners and employees, first responders, community members, and family caregivers. Additional educational events are also being planned;
— Coming out with localized plans. The City of West Hollywood is including Alzheimer’s and dementia readiness in the implementation of its Aging in Place/Aging in Community five-year strategic plan to improve the quality of life and well-being of older adults;
— Training for law enforcement personnel. The City of West Hollywood works closely with the L.A. County’s Sheriff’s and Fire departments and local nonprofit organizations to help protect and respond to the safety needs of the most vulnerable members of the community.
The Sheriff’s Department recently adopted new response protocols to locate missing persons who have wandered due to Alzheimer’s and other dementias, as well as autism. Also, deputies at the West Hollywood Sheriff’s Station routinely and frequently participate in Crisis Intervention (CIT) training, which includes training for safety issues related to dementia;
— Engaging with local colleges and universities. The City of West Hollywood currently offers a series of classes designed by UCLA faculty; these four-week programs are designed to provide strategies and exercises to improve long-term memory; and,
For more information about the city’s work to address Alzheimer’s and other dementias, contact the city Strategic Initiatives Manager Corri Planck at (323) 848-6430 or email@example.com.