Maricopa County invests in the future of Alzheimer’s and related dementia care


Thanks to a $250,000 grant from Maricopa County, along with significant philanthropic investment by the J. Orin Edson family, Banner Alzheimer’s Institute is expanding a virtual training and mentoring program for Phoenix metro area physicians and other primary care professionals to help them effectively treat patients with cognitive disorders, including Alzheimer’s and related dementias. 

The Dementia ECHO (Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes) is a free, 12-week course that will empower Banner Alzheimer’s Institute to train up to 250 frontline clinicians to feel more capable in diagnosing and managing memory disorders, while aiming to help patients and caregivers receive more effective care from local providers they know and trust. 

“The Maricopa County grant helps us expand the program, thus helping to reduce disparities in health care access in the community,” said Ganesh Gopalakrishna, MD, associate clinical medical director for BAI’s Stead Family Memory Center in Phoenix.

Program participants will connect virtually with instructors/mentors who specialize in Alzheimer’s and related dementias. Each session will include lectures on evidence-based practices on topics such as remote cognitive testing; medications; behavior management; disease progression; caregiver support; conveying diagnoses, prognoses, and issues such as driving, advance directives, and end-of-life care.

More than six million Americans have dementia, and as the proportion of older adults continues to grow in Maricopa County, more Arizonans will be living with Alzheimer’s and related dementias. Banner Alzheimer’s Dementia ECHO launched in 2020 with plans to expand across Banner Health and other health systems, and to attract care providers from a range of disciplines in diverse and underserved communities.

Support the Dementia ECHO program

Choose Edson Family Support Fund from the gift designation menu.