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Medical News & Perspectives
October 10, 2017

New Toolkits Help Physicians Detect, Diagnose, and Manage Dementia

JAMA. 2017;318(14):1310-1312. doi:10.1001/jama.2017.13627

Primary care practices are already flooded with older adults worried about their memories, and demands will only intensify as 76 million baby boomers reach their late 60s and 70s.

Recognizing the pressures this creates, several national organizations are mounting a push to improve the detection, diagnosis, and management of cognitive impairment and dementia in primary care.

The Gerontological Society of America (GSA) recently published a comprehensive toolkit outlining practical steps that primary care practitioners can take to evaluate and care for patients with cognitive impairment. Several months ago, the Alzheimer’s Association published a toolkit for physicians who create care plans for patients with cognitive impairment—an activity receiving more attention since a new Medicare billing code, G0505, enacted in January, will reimburse physicians for comprehensive care planning.