[Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents Volume 37, Number 46 (Monday, November 19, 2001)]
[Pages 1632-1633]
[Online from the Government Printing Office, www.gpo.gov]

<R04>
Proclamation 7497--National Alzheimer's Disease Awareness Month, 2001

November 9, 2001

By the President of the United States

of America

A Proclamation

    Approximately four million Americans suffer from Alzheimer's 
disease. It is a progressive degenerative disorder of the brain that 
robs those affected of their memory and much of their mental and 
physical function, leading to their total dependence on caregivers, and 
ultimately death. Slightly more than half of Alzheimer's disease 
patients receive care from their family and friends at home. Years of 
providing for the emotional, physical, and financial needs of a loved 
one with this difficult disease can be emotionally painful and 
exhausting for a caregiver.
    The chance of having Alzheimer's disease rises significantly with 
age, and as older Americans become a larger percentage of our Nation's 
population, the number of people expected to develop Alzheimer's will 
rise dramatically. It has been estimated that 14 million Americans, 
mostly seniors, will suffer from Alzheimer's by the middle of this 
century.
    My Administration is strongly committed to meeting the challenges of 
Alzheimer's disease by increasing funding for Federal medical research 
programs as well as providing improved support to Alzheimer's patients 
and their families and caregivers. Through

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the efforts of scientists at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and 
in the private sector, we are making great strides in defining genetic 
and environmental risks, diagnosing the disease in its earliest stages, 
and testing potential treatments. In addition, the NIH and the 
Department of Veterans Affairs are sponsoring research that focuses on 
improving care and easing the burden on those providing care at home and 
in nursing facilities. Finally, the Administration on Aging is working 
under the Alzheimer's Disease Demonstration Project Grants to States 
Program to expand the availability of diagnostic and support services 
available for Alzheimer's disease patients, their families, and their 
caregivers.
    Our Nation's medical research programs have produced significant 
advances in the delivery of health care for our older generations. In 
recent years, our seniors' retirement years have been fuller, more 
productive, and healthier. Despite this overall improvement in health 
care, Alzheimer's disease continues to take many of the best and most 
enjoyable years of life from millions of seniors. Much progress has been 
made in the study of Alzheimer's disease, but the fight to determine 
what causes it and to develop effective ways to treat and prevent the 
disease continues.
    As we observe National Alzheimer's Disease Awareness Month, I call 
on all Americans to learn more about the disease and to take time to 
honor and support Alzheimer's disease patients and their families. We 
should also acknowledge the scientists, physicians, nurses, and other 
medical and health professionals who are working diligently to advance 
knowledge and understanding of Alzheimer's disease.
    Now, Therefore, I, George W. Bush, President of the United States of 
America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and 
laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim November 2001, as National 
Alzheimer's Disease Awareness Month. I call upon the people of the 
United States to observe this month with appropriate programs and 
activities.
    In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this ninth day of 
November, in the year of our Lord two thousand one, and of the 
Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and twenty-
sixth.
                                                George W. Bush

[Filed with the Office of the Federal Register, 9:34 a.m., November 14, 
2001]

Note: This proclamation was published in the Federal Register on 
November 15. This item was not received in time for publication in the 
appropriate issue.