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Alzheimer’s conference coming to ABQ

Alzheimer’s Foundation of America

The Alzheimer’s Foundation of America’s 2020 national Educating America Tour is kicking off on Feb. 25 with a free Alzheimer’s and caregiver educational conference at the University of New Mexico.

The conference, which is open to everyone, is designed to connect people with information about Alzheimer’s disease, brain health, and dementia care giving. Participants have the opportunity to interact with Alzheimer’s experts, ask questions, network, and obtain a free memory screening.

“More than 41,000 New Mexico residents are living with Alzheimer’s disease; many others are caring for a family member with Alzheimer’s. As those numbers grow, it’s critically important to connect people with information that can help them if Alzheimer’s enters their lives,” said Charles J. Fuschillo, Jr., AFA’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “This conference will help individuals learn about Alzheimer’s disease, caring for someone who has Alzheimer’s and support resources that are available to help. We invite everyone to attend.”

There will be several informative sessions led by dementia and care giving experts, including:

Unraveling Alzheimer’s Disease: John DenBoer, Ph.D., will provide an overview of Alzheimer’s disease, and will talk about distinguishing Alzheimer’s from normal cognitive aging. He will also offer potential ways to improve brain health and wellness. Dr. DenBoer is Founder, CEO and Chief Medical Officer of Smart Brain Aging.

Creating Your Long Term Care Team: Having a strong network is essential for caregivers to reduce stress, prevent burnout, and ultimately provide the best care possible. Attorney Michael C. Sparks, from the Senior Citizens’ Law Office in Albuquerque will show how to build that support structure to aid in caregiving. He will also provide tips for long term care planning, discuss different long term care options and their benefits, and details that everyone should know when planning their long term care strategies. He will also teach attendees how to navigate legal, financial, health, and housing issues in their planning efforts

Innovative Activities — Preserving Functional Ability: Learn how thinking outside the box when programming activities allows for greater success and helps maintain high level of functioning. Theresa Thorland, MS/MA/CTRS/ACC, owner of Activity Director Certification Services, will discuss the importance of activity programming in helping someone with Alzheimer’s disease improve their quality of life. She will teach new, innovative programming ideas and share examples of personal experiences to help make caregivers’ lives a little easier. Theresa will provide tips on how you can turn daily activities into opportunities for joy, and how to make quality use of leisure time.

Free, confidential memory screenings will be conducted throughout the day.

The conference will be in UNM’s Student Union Building, Ballroom C, from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

For more information or to register, please visit

Those who can’t attend the conference or have immediate questions about Alzheimer’s disease can contact AFA’s National Toll-Free Helpline at 866-232-8484, or through the Internet at, seven days a week.


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