Alzheimer's risk in U.S. linked to race and location: study
North America;United States of America
Recent county-level data from the Alzheimer's Association paints a concerning picture of the disease's prevalence across the U.S., showing certain regions and races suffer more than others.
Black populations in the Mississippi Delta region, the elderly in southern Florida, Hispanic communities along the Mexican border, and low-income White populations in the Appalachians are bearing a disproportionate brunt of the disease.
Mississippi's figures are very troubling, where the highest Alzheimer’s mortality rate in the nation sits at 53 deaths per 100,000 people.
This is largely attributed to healthcare disparities in the state, contrasting with states like New York and Maryland that, despite having a high disease prevalence, benefit from robust healthcare systems which lead to better patient outcomes.
In July, the FDA greenlit the Alzheimer’s drug, Leqembi, signaling potential relief for some affected. But the drug may not address the socio-economic factors that lead to higher rates of Alzheimer’s, like lower education levels, increased poverty rates, and experiences of discrimination.
As the nation prepares for an escalating health crisis, many healthcare workers want future strategies to prioritize caregiver training, focused research on underrepresented communities, and comprehensive education about new therapeutic options.