Thursday, March 20, 2008

It's coming, for certain

The number of people who will be impacted by Alzheimer's disease in the coming years will be enough to sink the economy of the United States. The most powerful nation in the world has no defense against this disease. There is no "abstinence" so people won't catch it. There is no "healthy" approach to living that will spare people. There is no vaccination protocol to up your odds.

There is nothing you can do to avoid this. Just as you sit and wait for the sun to surely rise each morning, you will sit and wait for Alzheimer's to knock on your door.

This, to me, is unacceptable. We allow this to be "the-way-it-is". We tolerate inaction, the blind eye and deaf ear of the great majority of US citizens.

I'll keep standing on my street corner rallying the cry - WE WILL NOT ACCEPT THIS - until someone listens. I'll keep my little beggar can out there pleading for donations to fund Alzheimer's researchers. I'll keep writing.

Alzheimer's is CURABLE, it's TREATABLE, it's BEATABLE. But the Alzheimer's scientists in their labs are the ONLY ones fighting. And they say they are only funded to do about ten percent of the research they need to do. At that rate, we're destined to be the burden on our children that will crush them.

It doesn't take a crystal ball to figure out this beast of a disease is coming. It doesn't take an economist to figure out we can't afford to deal with it. It doesn't take a politician to figure out a sick aging population will crush the "future" of American youth.

It takes us - you and me - to turn this thinking around. We've been through it. We've lived it. We know in a way we wish we didn't, what this disease REALLY means. We know exactly what we're talking about. And if those who have been through it don't warn the others that are headed this way, we shirk one of our greatest responsibilities - to be our brother's keeper.

Soapbox speeches on blogs seem truly pathetic, but I keep imaging someday, someone with the power to turn things around will stumble upon all of these writings and listen. They'll see my little beggar can and donate. They'll get behind the solution before they become the problem.

Again, thank you for the opportunity to bring this up. There are no easy answers but one - put your money to work in the labs that are fighting this disease. And if you're interested in doing that, go to

Patty McNally Doherty


  1. Patty, you are right and the reminder to invest in research now so there is hope later is something we all need to remember and act upon. I will forward your post to others and send some emails too. Thanks for all you do. love, Barbara

  2. Yes! you have put into words my intense frustration about this disease. It is so difficult to get people not directly impacted by Alzheimer's to turn around and SEE that train coming for us all.

  3. Patty, Another great post, and your list of suggestions for coping with AD was very fine as well. I'll forward to Joey O. Keep up the good work. In the tradition of St. John the Baptist, you are a voice crying out in the wilderness. And he became a noted figure in the history of Western civilization. The Queen of Palm Beach will become a world-historic Saint!