The Wisconsin State Dementia Plan Steering Committee is a standing committee of 12 members that advise and support the implementation of the Wisconsin State Dementia Plan (PDF). This Wisconsin State Dementia Plan is organized into four priority areas: Care in the Community, Health Care, Crisis Response for People with Dementia, and Facility-Based Care. Each of the priority areas also has a team made up from leaders from the dementia network around the state that carry out the specific goals and strategies in the Wisconsin State Dementia Plan. This webpage provides information on the steering committee and the leadership teams.
Overview of the State Dementia Plan
- Partners across the state have come together to create and carry out the Wisconsin State Dementia Plan for 2019-2023 (PDF). The State Dementia Plan was created to provide a road map to help Wisconsin improve the quality of life for thousands of families affected by Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias and to minimize the public and private costs of these devastating conditions.
- The State Dementia Plan is a Wisconsin plan. Its success will depend on the active involvement of a wide variety of people with diverse perspectives, including community members; advocates; people who work in medical, social, crisis, and protective services; and residential care providers of all kinds.
- The Wisconsin State Dementia Plan Steering Committee includes 12 members that advise and support the implementation of the Wisconsin State Dementia Plan.
- Four leadership teams also help implement the state plan:
- Care in the Community Team: This team focuses on increasing the public’s understanding of dementia and reducing the stigma that many people living with dementia experience. This team also works to increase support for caregivers.
- Health Care Team: This team works to improve how primary care doctors diagnose dementia, so that patients can receive high-quality care that is appropriate for their family as soon as possible. Another goal is to make health care systems more dementia-friendly so that people living with dementia can receive care in settings that are less restrictive.
- Crisis Response Team: This team works to increase the dementia-related knowledge and skills of crisis response professionals. This team also works to develop a system for responding to crises involving people living with dementia, where crises are managed in place when possible.
- Facility-Based Care Team: This team focuses on the need for consistent, high-quality, and appropriate care for people living with dementia in skilled nursing and assisted living facilities. This team also works to expand the facility-based workforce, increase staff training, and develop a new structure for financing dementia care that is based on the needs of the patient.
History of the State Dementia Plan
2013 to 2017
- 2013: Department of Health Services (DHS) Secretary Kitty Rhoades called for a redesign of Wisconsin's dementia care system to provide appropriate, safe, and cost effective care for those living with dementia. The call was prompted by the devastating impact of dementia on many familie in Wisconsin, the work of a Special Legislative Committee on "Legal Interventions for Persons with Alzheimer's Disease and Related Dementia," and a related Wisconsin Supreme Court decision. In 2012, the Wisconsin Supreme Court held that Helen E.F., a person living with dementia but with no accompanying mental illness, could not be involuntarily committed. The Court held that Helen would more appropriately be subject to provisions under Chapter 55 rather than Chapter 51, of the Wisconsin Statutes. Following the call to address dementia care in Wisconsin, DHS convened a stakeholder summit.
- 2014: DHS published the state's Dementia Care System Redesign Plan.
- 2016 to 2017: DHS published two documents relecting on accomplishements in 2014-2015 and 2016-2017. For more information on the Redesign Plan, visit the facility-based long-term care page and the crisis response system page.
- 2018: DHS conducted a publish survey to get input from people living with dementia, family members, caregivers, and healthcare professionals. Participants identified their top needs as more options for those in crisis, better care in residential facilities, and greater public awareness. The state also convened a summit to strategize improvements to dementia care.
- 2019: The 2019-2023 State Dementia Plan is released. This second statewide plan builds on the successes of and lessons learned from the 2014 Redesign Plan.
- 2019 to 2023: The steering committee is responsible for helping to implement the State Dementia Plan. There are also leadership teams helping in each of the four focus areas: communities, health care, crisis response, and facilities.
- The steering committee, leadership teams, and other partners are in the process of creating the 2024-2028 State Dementia Plan.
- The next state plan will be rooted in these values.
Help Create the 2024-2028 State Plan
We invite you to engage memebers of your community to influence development of the 2024-2028 State Dementia Plan. Through these conversations, we hope to understand challenges and identify solutions to improve dementia care across the state.
You can download the Community Conversation Guide to learn how to gather feedback from your community about dementia care systems. If you decide to host a community conversation, please register your event with us.
We have also created an online survey that you can share to collect feedback.
For detailed guidance on how to help, please watch our Webinar. (passcode LNxH3&HF)
You can download images to promote events and the survey:
- If you are interested in joining one of the leadership teams, please fill out the volunteer interest survey. Most teams meet virtually once-per-month.
- To receive the latest news and to learn about more opportunities to get involved, sign up for the dementia email list.
- If you are looking for assistance for yourself or a loved one, please visit the individuals and families page.
- If you are interested in helping your community, business, or employer become more dementia-friendly, please visit the communities page.
- In 2020, it was estimated that 120,000 people in Wisconsin had Alzheimer's disease.
- By 2025, that number is expected to increase to 130,000 people.
- By 2040, the state's population over age 65 is expected to grow by 471,400 people (a 44% increase).
- Wisconsin has approximately 198,000 caregivers of people living with dementia, who provide an estimated 206 million hours of unpaid care every year.
- Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias are considered a major public health crisis by the World Health Organization, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and the citizens of the State of Wisconsin.
- For more information, visit Demographics of Aging in Wisconsin.