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SWHR Alzheimer’s Disease Policy Roundtable: Breaking Down the Burden of Alzheimer’s Disease for Women

August 23, 2022 @ 10:00 am - 3:00 pm EDT

Of the approximately 5.8 million people in the United States who have Alzheimer’s disease, two-thirds of them are women, and clear racial and ethnic disparities exist in both prevalence and incidence. Further, women have a 30% higher risk of dying from Alzheimer’s disease than men, and women disproportionately serve as unpaid Alzheimer’s and dementia caregivers, which has implications for their work and home life and mental health. 

Given the growing aging population in the United States, the burden of Alzheimer’s disease is expected to rise. By 2050, the number of adults over 65 with AD is expected to rise to 12.7 million. In 2020, the estimated total health care costs for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease was $305 billion, with the cost expected to increase to more than $1 trillion by 2050. 

The Society for Women’s Health Research (SWHR) is the nation’s thought leader in promoting research on biological sex differences in disease and improving women’s health through science, policy, and education. SWHR brings attention to diseases and conditions that exclusively affect women or that disproportionately or differently affect women. We have a 33-year history of bringing fresh thinking and thought leadership to improving women’s health and communicating knowledge to diverse stakeholders. Our science and policy roundtables and interdisciplinary networks have surveyed the current state of research in women’s health, examined research gaps, and published findings as peer-reviewed articles, patient and clinician toolkits, position statements, and other materials for diverse audiences. 

SWHR convened an interdisciplinary Alzheimer’s Disease Policy Working Group of policy experts, researchers, clinicians, and patient advocates for a closed, roundtable meeting in August 2022. During the roundtable, the Working Group discussed policy needs and opportunities as they relate to improving health and quality of life outcomes in Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias for women—both as patients and as caregivers.


August 23, 2022
10:00 am - 3:00 pm EDT
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The objectives of the roundtable are to:  

  • Review the state of science and clinical care to examine knowledge gaps related to Alzheimer’s disease and women and subpopulations of women
  • Examine the impact of AD on the health and well-being of women caregivers and how federal policy affects women caregivers
  • Consider health care policies around AD, based on the science, to improve patient outcomes and address disparities in care and access
  • Explore the best means to further research and develop comprehensive diagnosis and treatment strategies
  • Develop research, policy, and education recommendations to address knowledge, education, and care gaps. 

Roundtable Participants

  • Anna Burke, MD, Karsten Solheim Chair for Dementia, Barrow Neurological Institute
  • Nichole Goble, Director of Community Initiatives, Caregiver Action Network
  • Niles Godes, Chief Government Relations and Policy Officer, UsAgainstAlzheimer’s
  • Jennifer Pollack, Director, Access Policy, Alzheimer’s Association
  • Pamela Price, RN, Deputy Director, The Balm in Gilead
  • John Schall, Chief Executive Officer, Caregiver Action Network
  • Heather Snyder, VP of Medical and Scientific Relations, Alzheimer’s Association
  • Eric Sokol, Vice President, Public Policy, Alzheimer’s Foundation of America
  • Michael Ward, MS, Vice President of Public Policy and Government Affairs, Alliance for Aging Research
  • Gretchen Wartman, Vice President for Policy and Program, National Minority Quality Forum (NMQF)



SWHR’s Alzheimer’s Disease Program is supported by educational sponsorships from Eisai and Eli Lilly & Company. SWHR maintains editorial control and independence over educational content