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Alzheimer’s Association Gets $25M Grant to Improve Respite Support for Dementia Caregivers

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The Alzheimer’s Association says it will use a new $25 million grant to provide more resources, and support to give more respite breaks to caregivers of people living with dementia.

The grant is creating a new  Center for Dementia Respite Innovation (CDRI) to “fund new respite care innovation projects across the country,” including for friends or family members caring for a loved one or people who work at an adult day care or long-term care community. The end goal is to improve the quality and availability of respite care for the millions of dementia caregivers nationwide, according to Sam Fazio, who is the senior director of psychosocial research and quality care at the Alzheimer’s Association. 

“Providing dementia caregivers access to respite care can support and strengthen their ability to be good caregivers, while ensuring the person living with dementia is well cared for in a safe environment,” Fazio said in a news release regarding the grant award. “The Alzheimer’s Association deeply appreciates the trust and confidence the Administration for Community Living has placed in us to lead this important work.”

The CDRI will provide a total of 20 grants worth $4 million annually for the next five years to respite providers while offering online training and ongoing assistance. A key area of focus will include development, testing and replication of new approaches to deliver dementia-focused respite services.

The funding will also aid in the development of a catalog of programs and resources aimed at improving the quality of life for those living with dementia and their caregiving team. Goals within each grant could include training, intervention adoptions, partnership development with local health care providers, faith-based organization integration, flexible hours, expanded locations and more.

The effort stems from a 2022 National Strategy to Support Family Caregivers report that shows gaps in access to respite care can “be significant, adding to the stress and burden of unpaid caregivers.”
Requests for grant applications open in March with a deadline of May.

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