Department Of Health In Sarasota County Awarded Healthy Brain Initiative Grant

The Giving Coast

The Florida Department of Health in Sarasota County (DOH-Sarasota) has been selected by the Alzheimer’s Association and the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO) as a grantee for the Healthy Brain Initiative (HBI) Road Map Strategists. The grant will allow DOH-Sarasota to enhance its capacity to address cognitive health and dementia for residents and caregivers in Sarasota County. DOH-Sarasota has designated a HBI Road Map Strategist, a public health official working in support and coordination with public health partners across the community. The Road Map Strategist will conduct a public health needs assessment, train local health officials and key community partners, and lead implementation of public health action on dementia. People living with dementia and their family caregivers require support as cognitive, behavioral and physical functioning worsens over time. A strategic public health response is needed to mitigate this impact on all communities, and the addition of the HBI Strategist will help to improve Sarasota County’s response. About 37% of Sarasota County residents are 65 years and older with an average life expectancy of 81.4 years. Probable Alzheimer’s cases affect 13.9% of this age group. This means that about 21,680 residents in Sarasota County are likely directly impacted by Alzheimer’s. With the HBI Road Map Strategist, the hope is to enhance the community’s ability to positively impact the lives of those living with dementia and their caregivers and to be a model for other communities in the State.

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