Source: United States House of Representatives – Congressman Ted Deutch (FL-22)
Today, the U.S. House of Representatives unanimously passed the Promoting Alzheimer’s Awareness to Prevent Elder Abuse Act introduced by U.S. Representatives Ted Deutch (FL-22) and Guy Reschenthaler (PA-14). The legislation directs the U.S. Department of Justice to develop best practices and training materials for assisting professionals – law enforcement, firefighters, emergency personnel, social workers, court officials, and medical professionals – who encounter and support people living with Alzheimer’s and other dementia.
This population is particularly vulnerable to scams as their condition makes it more difficult for them to communicate the crimes to law enforcement or to seek life-saving assistance from first responders. Particularly amid the coronavirus pandemic, having best practices will help first responders and other professionals effectively interact with people living with Alzheimer’s and other dementia targeted by fraud and in need.
“With this vote, a unified House of Representatives voted to support the more than 5 million Americans living with Alzheimer’s and others living with forms of dementia and their families,” said Congressman Deutch. “For our loved ones living with this disease, we want the first responders and professionals caring for them to be properly trained in how to interact with them. Whether it’s responding to emergency calls or protecting them from predatory scammers, these best practices will help prepare these health and emergency workers to properly respond to and care for them.”
“I am proud that today the House passed the Promoting Alzheimer’s Awareness to Prevent Elder Abuse Act, which will equip our nation’s first responders and caregivers with best practices to respond to incidents of elder abuse, including financial fraud, physical abuse, and neglect,” said Congressman Reschenthaler. “Senior citizens suffering from Alzheimer’s and dementia are especially vulnerable to exploitation and other harm, and H.R. 6813 will ensure we have the tools to keep these Americans safe.”
“The Alzheimer’s Association and the Alzheimer’s Impact Movement (AIM) are truly grateful for Reps. Deutch and Reschenthaler’s leadership to pass the bipartisan Promoting Alzheimer’s Awareness to Prevent Elder Abuse Act,” said Robert Egge, Alzheimer’s Association chief public policy officer and AIM executive director. “A lot of hard work went into ensuring our seniors, especially those with Alzheimer’s and dementia, are at a decreased risk of falling victim to fraud and abuse. Our country’s law enforcement, firefighters, emergency personnel, social workers, court officials, and medical professionals will now be able to better support people living with Alzheimer’s and other dementias.”
This legislation was introduced on May 13, 2020. In April, Reps. Deutch and Reschenthaler called on House and Senate Leadership to include similar language in future coronavirus stimulus plans.