Claire Altschuler


(CHICAGO) January 18, 2008 – Several leaders of the Latino community will meet next week to address how to meet this population’s growing need for Alzheimer’s disease services. The gathering, called Nuestras Comunidades Nuestro Motivo (Our Communities, Our Commitment) will be held January 25th at the Greater Illinois Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association in Chicago.

Attendees will include Damon T. Arnold, Director of the Illinois Department of Public Health, Mireya Hurtado, Deputy Chief of Staff for the Office of Governor Rod R. Blagojevich and Manuel Rodriguez Arriaga, Ambassador of the Consulate of Mexico in Chicago. Several members of the Latino media will also be in attendance.

There are currently 200,000 Latinos in America with Alzheimer’s disease. By 2050, that number is expected to increase by 600 percent, to as many as 1.3 million. Some of the factors for this exponential growth include the high rate of cardiovascular disease and diabetes in this community as well as increasing age, the single greatest risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease. Alzheimer’s disease symptoms also begin earlier in Latinos than in non-Latino white Americans—by nearly seven years on average.

“The urgency of addressing the needs of this community could not be more apparent,” says Constantina Mizis, Manager of Multicultural Outreach for the Greater Illinois Chapter. “It’s critical that we join together now and work to prevent what is sure to become an epidemic in our community.”

The meeting and networking event will be held January 25th beginning at 11:00 a.m. at the chapter’s offices located at 8430 W. Bryn Mawr Ave., Suite 800, Chicago, Illinois.

About the Alzheimer’s Association

The Alzheimer's Association is the leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer care, support and research. Our mission is to eliminate Alzheimer’s disease through the advancement of research; to provide and enhance care and support for all affected; and to reduce the risk of dementia through the promotion of brain health. Our vision is a world without Alzheimer’s. Helpline: 800-272-3900. For more information, visit