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About the WAI Milwaukee Office

Estimates are that 50% of the people who have Alzheimer's disease are not diagnosed and that 50% of the people who have been diagnosed are not treated appropriately. These estimates may be higher in minority communities for a variety of reasons:

  • Alzheimer's disease is more prevalent among African-Americans and Hispanics than among whites-with estimates ranging from 14% to almost 100% higher.
  • African-Americans and Hispanics are often diagnosed at later stages of the disease, limiting the effectiveness of treatments that depend on early intervention.
  • Hispanics are disproportionately represented in the older age groups most at risk for Alzheimer's disease and may be at greater risk to develop dementia than other ethnic or racial groups because of a higher prevelance of diabetes, a known risk factor for Alzheimer's disease.
  • People from minority communities are seriously underrepresented in current research designed to understand the causes and develop new treatments for Alzheimer's disease.

Recognizing the emerging public health crisis Alzheimer's disease poses on African-American and Hispanic communities, the Wisconsin Alzheimer's Institute (WAI), with the support of Bader Philanthropies (formerly the Helen Bader Foundation) and the UW School of Medicine and Public Health, has developed an outreach program in the city of Milwaukee. WAI staff partner with local organizations and individuals to educate physicians and other healthcare providers about Alzheimer's disease, develop memory diagnostic clinics and other services that support persons with the disease and their caregivers. Through collaborative public awareness events with local organizations, WAI staff are ensuring that people in Milwaukee's minority communities are learning more about the disease, how to obtain support and information and how to participate in research.


Follow the links below for further information on WAI Milwaukee Project programs, and check back soon for further updates.


For more information on the WAI Milwaukee Project, please contact:

Gina Green Harris



Alzheimer’s disease not only affects the person with AD, but also family members, friends, colleagues and especially caregivers. The following is a video entitled “Mommy doesn’t live here anymore”, created by our spokesperson Cassandra McSheppard. The video provides a real perspective of how Alzheimer’s disease changed the life of one family forever. Cassandra’s story is representative of many others who are also on this journey. It is our hope that this video would provide you with hope and encouragement that you do not have to go through this journey alone.

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