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In the US, 10,000 baby boomers turn 65 every day; by the time a person reaches 85, their chances of having dementia approach 50 percent. Dr. Tia Powell joins us to demystify dementia by helping us understand this condition with clearer eyes, from the point of view of both physician and caregiver. Drawing from her book Dementia Reimagined: Building a Life of Joy and Dignity from Beginning to End, Dr. Powell moves the conversation away from an exclusive focus on cure to a genuine appreciation of care—what we can do for those who have dementia, and how to keep life meaningful and even joyful.
She offers a combination of medicine and memoir, peeling back the untold history of dementia, from the story of Solomon Fuller, a black doctor whose research at the turn of the twentieth century anticipated important aspects of what we know about dementia today, to what has been gained and lost from the barrage of funding for Alzheimer’s at the expense of other forms of the disease. Dr. Powell offers us an expanded understanding of dementia, and illuminates how dementia is not only about loss—it’s also about the preservation of dignity and hope.
Dr. Tia Powell is a physician and bioethicist who holds the Trachtenberg chair in Bioethics at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, where she is professor of epidemiology and psychiatry. She also directs the Montefiore Einstein Center for Bioethics and the Certificate and Masters Programs in Bioethics.
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