Preventing Alzheimer's and caring for those who have it

FALL RIVER -- Alzheimer's Disease is the most common form of dementia, afflicting nearly 30 million people world-wide. Doctors predict that by 2050, one in 85 people in the world will have it, including many under 65.

As the incidence of Alzheimer's continues to grow, more family members are finding themselves caring for loved ones who are going through the various stages of the disease. Long-term care facilities, including Catholic ones, are being required to dedicate more of their beds and resources to caring compassionately for those with this form of dementia.

Since there is presently no cure for Alzheimer's, great efforts are being made to prevent or slow its onset.

The prevention of Alzheimer's and the compassionate care for those who have it are also becoming more urgent, particularly in an age where Alzheimer's Disease and other forms of dementia are being used by euthanasia proponents as arguments in favor of doctor-prescribed suicide proponents.

In order to address this growing human and pastoral need, Father Roger Landry, pastor of St. Bernadette's Parish in Fall River and former executive editor of The Anchor, and Dr. Vincent Fortanasce, clinical professor of neurology at the University of Southern California and one of the country's leading experts in the prevention and treatment of Alzheimer's, have teamed up in an upcoming 13-part series on EWTN, entitled "Remembering Jesus."

The series will air on Monday nights at 11 pm, beginning March 4. EWTN, one of two national Catholic television stations, is Channel 238 on Comcast, 285 on Verizon Fios and 370 on Direct TV.