Placer County receives grant to support residents with Alzheimer’s, dementia

A new grant from the California Department of Public Health will help create “dementia-friendly communities” in Placer County. The county’s Public Health division was one of six statewide that were awarded the competitive grant, and will receive a total of $750,000 over a period of about two years. 

Public Health will embark on a collaborative effort to increase community supports so that residents with Alzheimer’s and other age-related brain dementias may lead fulfilling lives and remain engaged and independent as long as possible.

 Placer is an aging community, with 74,000 residents over the age of 65 in 2017. The county’s senior population will surge to about 120,000 by 2030, according to California Department of Finance forecasts — about 26% of the total estimated population. 

From 2003 to 2017, the number of deaths in Placer County from Alzheimer’s increased 162%, making it the third-leading cause of death.

“This grant will allow us to mobilize partnerships across many sectors, like healthcare, transportation, community-based organizations, law enforcement, businesses and others,” said Dr. Aimee Sisson, the county’s health officer and public health director. “Bringing everyone to the table will give us a more comprehensive understanding of the needs of our residents with Alzheimer’s and their caregivers.”

Over the grant period, Public Health will conduct initial, more in-depth research into areas of need in our community; develop a collaborative advisory committee; and work with that group on community outreach and policies that could positively impact the county, informed by best practices from other communities across the country. 

The grant is part of the larger Healthy Brain Initiative.

“We’re grateful for the opportunity to address this public health issue at the local level, and together with our community partners, find meaningful solutions to minimize the impacts of Alzheimer’s disease to Placer County residents,” Sisson said. 

Learn more on the California Department of Public Health’s website here.