The WAM Summit
In June Kensington Senior Living partnered with The Women’s Alzheimer’s Movement (WAM) and founder Maria Shriver to present the first ever virtual WAM Summit. The event included some of the country’s leading minds for a multi-faceted discussion on caregiving, the impact of Alzheimer’s on families, as well as some of the latest research around women’s brains in connection to Alzheimer’s disease. You can watch and share the event video recording below.
Paula Zahn, Award Winning Journalist
Janine Austin Clayton, MD, NIH Associate Director for Research on Women’s Health and Director, NIH Office of Research on Women’s Health
Lisa Mosconi, PhD, Neuroscientist & Author of The XX Brain
Donna Rand, Caregiving Advocate
Anne Basting, Author of Creative Care
The moderators for this event, both daughters of individuals with Alzheimer’s, were Maria Shriver and Paula Zahn. These two renowned journalists, led two different panel discussions and added valuable antidotes from their own personal experience caring for parents with Alzheimer’s.
WAM Founder Maria Shriver said, “We know that two out of three brains that develop Alzheimer’s belong to women, but we don’t know why. In addition, women’s research is way behind men’s research… We can’t close the knowledge gap unless we do the research. And we can’t help women on the front lines of this disease without that research.”
The first panel started with Dr. Janine Clayton from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Office of Research on Women’s Health where they focus on conducting research and funding research specifically for women’s health issues. She explained the current issue of “The gold standard for studying women’s health does not lie in studying men, but women.” So it is a priority at her office to focus on women’s studies and particularly the unique issues that present at high rates in women of color. Also part of this prestigious panel was Patrice Harris, MD, former President of the American Medical Association (AMA) who also discussed health equality in our communities. Joined by Jessica Caldwell, PhD, Director of the WAM Prevention Center at Cleveland Clinic, and Lisa Mosconi, PhD from Weill Cornell and author of The XX Brain who was able to share about her new breaking research on women’s brains and hormones.
The next panel focused on caregivers and tips for Alzheimer’s families who are trying to navigate the difficult journey with their loved one. Panelist Anne Basting PhD, and author of the incredible book Creative Care spoke about dedicating her life’s work to studying the dementias and then unexpectedly found herself at a family gathering and her own mother could not remember where to put her own salad bowl in the kitchen cabinets. Anne, along with Donna Rand, MacArthur Genius Award winner, who walked the journey with her husband, discussed tips that helped them survive and be effective caregivers. Cynthia Huling Hummel, former pastor who is currently living with early onset Alzheimer’s herself also provided a profound message to our engaged group to always remember “Don’t talk about us, without us,” when discussing priorities and policy and working to de-stigmatize dementia for those living with the disease.
“Kensington Senior Living was honored to sponsor the distinguished WAM Summit. It was engaging and empowering for caregivers throughout the country. The loving care we provide at Kensington Senior Living when we partner with families dealing with dementia, deeply relies on the crucial work organizations like WAM do to raise awareness and promote brain health for a brighter tomorrow.” said our very own Co-Founder of Kensington Senior Living, Tiffany Tomasso.”
Thank you to all who participated in the event, and to all who attended. Please enjoy the event video below and feel free to share this with others who might benefit and help us continue to educate, empower and support those living with dementia.
Don’t miss this special thank you clip from WAM Founder, Maria Shriver: