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TTUHSC hosts free Alzheimer's screenings

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Amarillo, TX - Cases of Dementia and Alzheimer's are growing in our area and across the nation.

Every year Texas Tech holds Alzheimer's screenings to the public at no cost in honor of "National Memory Screening Day".

This year Tech saw its largest turnout ever compared to past events.

The free screenings brought out almost 100 more people than last year's event.

The screenings not only test memory, they also check for language and problem solving skills.

We spoke with Sandy Crow, right after his screening about why he decided to come out to the event.

"I don't want to be a burden on my family or anyone else".

Right now its estimated about 5.3 million Americans have Alzheimer's disease.

That number is expected to grow significantly over next 20 to 50 years.

"The number one risk factor probably for development of Alzheimer's is actually advanced age. As we live longer, healthier, we are starting to see this more prevalent" - Eric MacLaughlin, Pharm.D

MacLaughlin spoke with us about how Alzheimer's treatment will be covered under the Affordable Care Act.

"Most insurance plans cover if patients come into see their physician. If they have prescription drug coverage it will cover some of the medications out there. We do have several FDA approved medications to treat Alzheimer's disease. You know it really depends on individual coverage. However, most plans do cover those types of services."

The memory screening used at the event will not diagnose an illness, but it will indicate if a person needs additional check-ups.

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