KEYNOTE SPEAKER: MARSEL MESULAM, MD
Register/RSVP at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (808) 261-4476
HAWAII PATHWAYS TO EXCELLENCE IN DEMENTIA CARE AND RESEARCH
Coral Ballrooms, Hilton Hawaiian Village
(Please not venue change)
Friday, February 8th, 2013 Objectives of Inaugural and Future Symposiums:
1. To increase awareness of one of the most important medical conditions and how it affects Hawai`i, the U.S. and the world – as well as its impact on future healthcare issues.
2. To train healthcare professionals to recognize early signs of common dementia syndromes and how they differ from normal aging and other medical conditions.
3. To educate healthcare professionals about methods of accurately diagnosing common dementia syndromes.
4. To identify available local, national and international resources for patients with dementia and their caregivers.
5. To aim for a higher level of awareness and standards of care by recommending comprehensive interdisciplinary care for patients and caregivers.
6. To inspire the next generations of healthcare professionals and caregivers in Hawai`i to innovate and be involved in research to improve the quality of life and care for our elderly and dementia populations and their caregivers.
Dementia is the most common neurological disorder and is currently one of the most important public health issues facing Hawai`i, the U.S. and the world due to a rapidly aging population. Although Hawaii has the highest elderly population per capita in the nation for those over 85 — and preliminary numbers indicate that Hawaii is expected to have an explosive growth in the aging population — our state currently does not have the infrastructure of a tertiary care multidisciplinary dementia and research facility.
As the U.S. population ages, Hawai`i may serve as “pilot state” for the future of aging. Hawaii is therefore at the forefront and serves as “petri dish” for healthcare professionals, researchers, government agencies and insurance agencies, among others, to affect the course of dementia care for the rest of the nation and our own future.
Significant challenges include: (1) Healthcare professionals not recognizing early symptoms and signs of dementia leading often to misdiagnoses or under-diagnoses, (2) Lack of awareness in differentiating dementia from normal aging or other non-dementing medical illness, (3) Lack of evidence-based use of dementia therapy and preventive strategies, (4) Healthcare professionals not aware of available services and resources for patients and caregivers, (5) Delay in referral to dementia care specialists or an Alzheimer’s Disease Center, (6) Lack of research or innovative work in the aging and dementia fields.
The symposium will address the above challenges and will provide a platform to bring clinicians, researchers, government agencies, health and social science professionals and other stakeholders together to raise awareness of the challenges facing consumers and to brainstorm innovative methods to tackle these challenges. By working together as an `ohana (family) of professionals dedicated to caring for our elderly and dementia patients, we can accomplish so much more.