Dartmouth researcher to study inequity in Alzheimer’s care

Published: 09-05-2023 3:37 PM

HANOVER — The National Institute on Aging has granted $16.2 million to a team of researchers led by Dr. Amber Barnato, of the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth, for a study of inequity in Alzheimer’s care.

The five-year grant seeks to build on the group’s prior work, which focused on vulnerable populations such as people with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias, historically marginalized racial groups, lower income brackets and people with disabilities, according to a news release from Geisel. This new work will focus on how those identities affect treatment and outcomes.

The effort led by Barnato, the director of The Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice at Geisel, includes research hubs at the University of Indiana Medical School and Harvard Medical School.

The grant includes three main aims: examining biases that people with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias face, including those embedded in policies and systems that affect them; studying how consolidation in health care and alternative payment models that encourage coordinated care and home-based services affect people with Alzheimer’s; and investigating biases that people with Alzheimer’s face in clinical decision making.

Overall the work aims to inform efforts to improve care and social support services for people with the disease. About 6.7 million Americans aged 65 or older have Alzheimer’s disease, a number that is projected to grow to 14 million people by 2060, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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