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Wisconsin State Dementia Plan

A coalition of partners across the state have come together to create and carry out the 2024–2028 Wisconsin State Dementia Plan (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 Wisconsin State Dementia Plan presents goals and strategies informed by a year-long community and partner engagement process. The success of the State Dementia Plan will require the involvement of community, medical, social, crisis and protective services, advocacy, and provider networks. The State Dementia Plan provides a road map to help Wisconsin improve the quality of life for the thousands of families affected by Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias, and to minimize the public and private costs of these devastating conditions.


  • 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 families 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, P-00563 (PDF).
  • 2014: DHS published the state's Dementia Care System Redesign Plan, P-00586 (PDF).
  • 2016 to 2017: DHS published two documents reflecting on accomplishments in 2014-2015, P-01555 (PDF), and 2016-2017, P-02092 (PDF). 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 public survey, P-02104 (PDF), 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, P-02241 (PDF), 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.


  • 2022 and early 2023: Partners around the state collected feedback from their communities on dementia care needs through surveys and listening sessions.
  • 2023: Three 2024–2028 State Dementia Plan Summits were hosted to further gather input on the plan's goals, strategies, and implementation.
  • 2024: A document is released that summarizes the accomplishments made during the 2019–2023 State Plan period (PDF).
  • 2024: The 2024–2028 State Dementia Plan (PDF) and Executive Summary (PDF) are released. This plan marks a shift from a steering committee structure to a coalition model, further emphasizing that it is a plan for the state and not of the state.

  • 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.

Disclaimer about advisory council content

This content reflects the views and opinions of the advisory council. It may not reflect the official policy or position of DHS.

Last revised April 18, 2024