Alzheimer’s Association’s African-American Memory Loss Forum returns to Coppin


The Alzheimer’s Association Greater Maryland Chapter will host the 11th Annual Pythias A. and Virginia I. Jones African-American Community Forum on Memory Loss, Saturday, November 7, 2015 from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., at Coppin State University located at 2500 W. North Avenue in Baltimore.

Over 400 family caregivers, health professionals, business leaders and policymakers are expected to attend the event, which is named in honor of the parents of State Senator Verna L. Jones-Rodwell, Ernestine Jones Jolivet, Alvin A. Jones, Pythias D. Jones, MD and the late Gilda Jones-Garrett, who were affected by dementia.

Research suggests that the prevalence, incidence and cumulative risk of Alzheimer’s disease appear to be much higher in African-Americans, and older African-Americans are about twice as likely to have Alzheimer’s and other dementias than older whites.

Additionally, blood pressure and diabetes, which are more prevalent in African-American and Hispanic people, may increase one’s risk for Alzheimer’s disease and other dementia.

“Although the rate of Alzheimer’s in African-Americans is higher than in white people, they are less likely to have a diagnosis,” said Cass Naugle, executive director of the Alzheimer’s Association Greater Maryland Chapter. “This Forum is an opportunity to speak directly to the African-American community about the disease, the risk factors, how to plan and what services are available.”

Lisa Barnes, Ph.D. (Rush University Medical Center) will open the Forum with the plenary talk on the risk factors for dementia in older African-Americans. Morning and afternoon breakout sessions will cover legal and financial planning, medication management, causes of dementia and how to diagnose them, healthy habits and managing caregiver stress.

The closing panel discussion will explore programs and services to help dementia caregivers. Additionally, attendees can receive nutrition consultations and blood pressure screenings, and schedule Glaucoma screenings.

Event admission is free and includes a continental breakfast and lunch, courtesy of the Alzheimer’s Association and event sponsors: Allegis Group, Baltimore City Health System, Coppin State University’s Helene Fuld School of Nursing, Johns Hopkins Memory & Alzheimer’s Treatment Center, Pharmasite Research and WeCare Private Duty Services.