As we celebrate Black History Month, it is critical that we also consider the present and future health of this community. Compared to the general public, African-Americans have a higher risk of diabetes, heart disease and stroke, which can all lead to greater risk for developing Alzheimer’s disease, a growing epidemic with no cure and no survivors. More than 5 million Americans are currently living with Alzheimer’s and that number could burgeon to 16 million by 2050 if something is not done immediately.
This month the Alzheimer’s Association applauds the efforts of individuals whose tireless efforts have advanced care and research for this fatal and progressive brain disease. Solomon Carter Fuller, M.D., was among the first known black psychiatrists and a pioneer among Alzheimer’s Champions. The grandson of a slave, Dr. Fuller worked along side Dr. Alois Alzheimer, who discovered the traits of the disease in 1901. Dr. Fuller is responsible for countless contributions to the field as a researcher and educator. The Solomon Carter Fuller Mental Health Center in Boston is named in his honor.
I encourage you to join Dr. Fuller in the fight against Alzheimer’s by becoming an Alzheimer’s Association Champion. Visit www.alz.org/indiana to learn more about brain health and how you can get involved today.
Alzheimer’s Association Greater Indiana Chapter