“Of all the forms of inequality, injustice in health care is the most shocking and inhumane.”

— Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Your voice matters

Blacks are two times as likely to get Alzheimer's as whites. Join us to end this disparity!

About Us

AfricanAmericansAgainstAlzheimer’s is the nation’s first organization dedicated to building a coordinated national response to eliminate and address Alzheimer’s disease (AD) among African Americans. The fourth leading cause of death for older African Americans, AD has a disparate impact on African Americans.   

Our Mission is to 

  • Prevent, educate, test, treat, and support individuals in communities of color that have been or will be highly impacted by AD.
  • Promote brain health and healthy aging among all peoples and especially members of the black community.
  • Find a cure or a way to slow, halt ,or stop the progression of Alzheimer’s and its disparate generational impact on African American families.

Goals

  • Inform and educate members of the African American community about our dramatically higher risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease;
  • Identify and engage political, policy and community leaders about the need for increased resources for Alzheimer’s research, drug discovery, care, and services;
  • Mobilize African Americans to become aware of and to participate in studies focused on finding better treatments, diagnostic tools, and hopefully a cure for the disease;
  • Inform business, scientific, and industry leaders about the need for greater investment in research designed to understand and respond to race-based differences in the incidence and treatment of Alzheimer’s disease; and
  • Work with employers to promote paid leave and other family-friendly practices for families affected by the disease.

Beliefs

The AfricanAmericansAgainstAlzheimer's network is unified by a simple but bold belief: it is possible to prevent and effectively treat Alzheimer's disease within the decade, but only if our nation is united and mobilized for action and has a clear goal and plan. Given the disparate impact of Alzheimer's disease on African Americans, it is essential that we Stand Up and Speak Out so that we can Overcome this disease and its multigenerational impacts.

To do this we

  • Inform and educate members of the African American community about our dramatically higher risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease;
  • Encourage early detection and development of a plan of care;
  • Mobilize African Americans to become aware of and to participate in studies focused on finding a cure for the disease;
  • Engage political, policy, and community leaders about the need for increased resources for Alzheimer’s research, drug discovery, care, and services;
  • Inform business, scientific, and industry leaders, especially leaders of the academic and pharmaceutical communities, about the need for increased research on the race-based differences in the incidence and treatment of Alzheimer’s disease; and
  • Participate in state and national efforts designed to promote job-friendly practices (including paid leave) for families affected by the disease.

Honorary Founding Chairs

The founders of AfricanAmericanAgainstAlzheimer’s are leaders from across the United States who share our commitment and passion to seek an end to Alzheimer’s disease by 2020. They represent a wide diversity of interests and expertise and are led by four distinguished Honorary Co-Chairs: the Reverend Al Sharpton, Director of the National Action Network; Dr. David Satcher, Former Surgeon General of the United States; The Honorable Kay Coles James, Former Director of the Office of Personnel Management; and Ms. Melody Barnes, Former head of President Obama’s Domestic Policy Council.

Our founders are individuals recognized as civic, social, business, and professional leaders. Many have experienced the ravages of this disease first hand. All passionately believe that the disparate impact of Alzheimer’s—which affects African Americans at twice the rate that it does non-Hispanic white Americans—must be addressed.

  • 5.7 million

    Americans currently have Alzheimer’s disease.

  • 20%

    of Americans with the disease are African Americans, and they bear 33% of its national cost.

  • 4th

    Alzheimer's is the 4th leading cause of death among older African Americans.

The Costs of Alzheimer’s and Other Dementia for African Americans

The economic burden of Alzheimer’s and other dementias for African Americans was $71.6 billion in 2012. Caregiving for African Americans with AD represents the bulk of these costs—more than 60%. More than 60% of the costs are borne by the families of African American women with AD, and close to half of the costs are concentrated in the southern states.

In the News

“We need to ban together to increase minority participation—and African American participation in particular—in clinical trials. It’s the only way to ensure that new drugs, treatments, and therapies are both safe and effective for our community.”

Stephanie Monroe

Director of AfricanAmericansAgainstAlzheimer’s

Resources

  • Resources
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    Blacks & Alzheimer's Awareness Research Top Priorities

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    Post and Courier - Black Americans are Twice as Likely

  • Resources
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    Ebony - Forget Me Not

  • Resources
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    African Americans are more likely than whites to develop Alzheimer’s. Why?

  • Resources
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    NIA: Understanding Alzheimer’s Disease

  • Resources
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    NIA: Understanding Alzheimer’s Genes