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Alzheimer’s Association Announces HBI Road Map Strategist Cohort

Jan 31, 2024 | Abigael Oliva

— Ten Local Public Health Departments Selected to Address Brain Health and Dementia —

The Alzheimer’s Association and NACCHO have announced the third cohort of the Healthy Brain Initiative (HBI) Road Map Strategists. This nationwide effort focuses on addressing dementia at the local level, and the Road Map Strategist program increases the capacity of local health departments and tribal health organizations to address brain health in their communities.

Through the program, ten local health departments or tribal health organizations are selected each year through a competitive application process to receive direct funding, training, and technical assistance. With these resources, they establish a part-time Road Map Strategist, a public health professional who serves as a systems change agent working to advance population health approaches related to dementia.

“Public health continues to build capacity to address brain health, dementia and caregiving at the national and state levels — and increasingly now, at the local level,” said John Shean, MPH, director of the Healthy Brain Initiative. “We’re excited to collaborate with ten new city and county health departments as they lead the way to improving health in their communities.”

The local public health departments and tribal health organizations selected for 2024 represent a diverse cohort in terms of health department size and structure, geography and populations served. It includes:

  • Clay County Health Department (Illinois)
  • Davis County Health Department (Utah)
  • Kitsap Public Health District (Washington)
  • Lamar County Health Department (Georgia)
  • Nelson-Griggs District Health Unit (North Dakota)
  • Northeast Tri County Health District (Washington)
  • Oneida County Health Department (Wisconsin)
  • Panhandle Public Health District (Nebraska)
  • Pharr Department of Health (Texas)
  • Waukesha County Public Health (Wisconsin)

The Road Map Strategists will work in support and coordination with public health partners, including health systems. With guidance from the Alzheimer’s Association, NACCHO and peer support, Road Map Strategists will conduct a public health needs assessment, train local officials and key community partners, and lead implementation of public health action on dementia, informed by guidance from The Healthy Brain Initiative: State and Local Road Map for Public Health, 2023-2027.

“Alzheimer’s and other dementias in local communities are critical public concerns,” said Abby Oliva, M.S., MPH, senior program analyst, Healthy Aging and Cognitive Health at NACCHO. “The HBI Road Map Strategist program empowers local public health professionals to build skills in the advancement of brain health capacity, engage partners in cross-sectoral collaboration, utilize a systems-change approach for risk reduction in cognitive decline, and support caregivers. This unique opportunity also addresses social determinants of health and health equity in data-informed decisions, evaluation, and implementation of brain health-related programs. NACCHO is proud to partner with the Alzheimer’s Association in the third year of the HBI Road Map Strategist program.”

The Road Map Strategists are funded by the HBI, a collaboration between the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Alzheimer’s Association. The HBI has been a catalyst for securing collection of state data on Alzheimer’s-related issues, developing public health road maps to guide public health departments in addressing Alzheimer’s, and developing the first public health curriculum on Alzheimer’s for public health students and professionals. The HBI Road Map Strategist program is the next important step to address Alzheimer’s and brain health through public health intervention at the local level.

About the Alzheimer’s Association

The Alzheimer’s Association is a worldwide voluntary health organization dedicated to Alzheimer’s care, support and research. Our mission is to lead the way to end Alzheimer’s and all other dementia — by accelerating global research, driving risk reduction and early detection, and maximizing quality care and support. Our vision is a world without Alzheimer’s and all other dementia®. Visit alz.org or call 800.272.3900.

National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO)

The National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO) represents the country’s 3,300 local governmental health departments. These city, county, metropolitan, district, and tribal departments work every day to protect and promote health and well-being for all people in their communities. For more information about NACCHO, please visit naccho.org.

The Healthy Brain Initiative

The Healthy Brain Initiative and the development and implementation of the HBI Road Map Series is supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of a financial assistance award totaling $11,433,732 with 100% funded by CDC/HHS. The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by CDC/HHS, or the U.S. Government.


About Abigael Oliva

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