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New York Legislature Highlights for Awareness of Alzheimer's Disease

NEW YORK, Responding to the escalating incidence of Alzheimer's disease nationwide, both the New York State Senate and New York State Assembly yesterday passed a resolution aimed at raising awareness of the importance of early detection, education and care related to this brain disorder.

The resolution declared November 2007 as Alzheimer's Disease Awareness Month and November 13, 2007 as Memory Screening Day in New York State.

State Senator Martin J. Golden (R-C, Brooklyn), chairman of the Senate Aging Committee, and Assemblyman Steven Englebright (D-Setauket), chairman of the Assembly Committee on Aging, introduced the resolution. It was initiated by the Alzheimer's Foundation of America (AFA), a national nonprofit organization based in New York City that focuses on providing optimal care to individuals with Alzheimer's disease and related dementias, and their families.

Currently, an estimated 330,000 New Yorkers have Alzheimer's disease. Eric J. Hall, AFA's chief executive officer, applauded the efforts of the two chairmen in spearheading the resolution.

"This recognition by the New York State Legislature is a major step toward eradicating the stigma and denial that continues to surround Alzheimer's disease. Only by raising awareness will more people understand that they should not hide from warning signs. Early diagnosis and utilization of community support services can ultimately improve quality of life in the face of this heartbreaking disease," Hall said.

He added that the declaration of November 13 as Memory Screening Day is especially significant, noting: "It will hopefully open the floodgates, encouraging people to seek free screenings if they note warning signs of Alzheimer's disease or, simply, if they want to learn more. These screenings are a great start toward education and care."

AFA initiated National Memory Screening Day in 2002 and has offered the event in collabor
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