A bill cosponsored by 21 of Florida’s set up a national network of Alzheimer’s research, treatment and support centers of excellence, was approved late Wednesday in the U.S. House of Representatives, sending it to the desk of President Donald Trump.
The Building Our Largest Dementia Infrastructure for Alzheimer’s Act or the BOLD Infrastructure for Alzheimer’s Act, or Senate Bill 2076, was approved by a vote of 361-3, after being approved by the U.S. Senate last week.
U.S. Rep. Val Demings of Orlando was one of the cosponsors and worked hard on the bill, in part because a close family member suffered from the disease. She hailed its passage Thursday.
“My family, like so many others, has been affected by Alzheimer’s Disease. Alzheimer’s afflicts millions of Americans and is a leading cause of death. Even worse, it is a profoundly cruel disease which begins to rob us of our loved ones even before they pass,” Demings stated in a news release. “It has been deeply important to me that our government, with all our resources, do more to fund the search for a cure to Alzheimer’s, and I am gladdened that bipartisan Members of Congress have joined together to say that an end to Alzheimer’s is a national goal.”
According to the Alzheimer’s Association, cited in Demings’ release, Alzheimer’s is the 6th leading cause of death in the United States, and cases increased by 123% from 2000 to 2015. 5.7 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s, and one in three seniors dies with Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia.
“I am deeply grateful to the incredible advocates and activists whose tireless work helped to make this win happen,” she stated. “We will continue to fight for additional research and resources until we finally reach an end to Alzheimer’s.”