Dementia Support Northwest Presents the 35th Annual Conference


October 1st, 2021, 1:30 P.M., Dr. Kristoffer Rhoads

Medical Update: Dementia and Related Conditions

This presentation will review the recent advances in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of Alzheimer’s Disease and related dementias. The presentation will also include information about local, state, regional and national resources for people and families living with dementia as well as providers.

Dr. Kristoffer Rhoads is an Associate Professor in the Department of Neurology at the University of Washington School of Medicine.  He specializes in the evaluation and rehabilitation-oriented treatment of dementia and related disorders and is also the neuropsychologist for the UW Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center.  Dr. Rhoads currently serves as co-director of Project ECHO- Dementia and is Chair of the Health and Medical Subcommittee of the Dementia Action Collaborative, tasked with developing and implementing a state plan for Alzheimer’s disease as well as disseminating the standards for dementia-related healthcare in Washington State.

October 8th, 2021, 1:30 P.M., Denise Weeks

A Family Caregiving Perspective

Caregivers often find themselves asking, “Is this normal?” They ask it about behaviors they see in their loved one, about ways family and friends respond, and about interactions they and their loved one have with the larger community. Asking “Is this normal?” means that we find ourselves in unfamiliar and unsettling territory. Getting an answer means seeking information and support. This presentation will explore ways to navigate the constantly shifting ground of caring for someone with dementia and discuss how community—with all its rich diversity—is essential in answering this frequent caregiver question.

Denise Weeks co-leads a local support group for adult children caring for a parent with dementia, and she gives care to her mother, who now lives at Silverado in Bellingham. Denise is the author of Mantra: Repetition in the Land of Alzheimer’s, a collection of personal essays about giving care, taking care, and the support required for both.

October 15th, 2021, 1:30 P.M., Dr. Bree Johnston

How Palliative Care Can Help Patients with Dementia and Their Families

Dr. Johnston will discuss the philosophy of palliative care and discuss various palliative options that patients with dementia and their families might consider depending on a patient’s goals, values, and quality of life throughout the course of a dementing illness.  She will also discuss the importance of advance care planning early in the course of a dementing illness and community resources that are available to patients with dementia and their families.

Bree Johnston is the Director of Palliative Care at Skagit Regional Health System.  She is also a Professor of Clinical Medicine at the University of Arizona College of Medicine. Dr. Johnston received her education and training from UC Santa Cruz, UC Berkeley, UC San Francisco, UC Davis, and Stanford University. She is the author of numerous book chapters and journal articles, has spoken extensively on numerous geriatrics and palliative care topics, and has served on multiple national committees.