discussion program

Colorado Public Television and the Alzheimer’s Association of Colorado present THE SUM TOTAL OF OUR MEMORY: FACING ALZHEIMER’S TOGETHER, a film by award-winning filmmaker Barbara Klutinis, followed by a live in-studio discussion during which the panel will answer audience questions.

Dr. Luis Medina, one of Colorado’s leading Alzheimer’s researchers from University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, Amelia Schafer, vice president of programs for the Alzheimer’s Association of Colorado, and a Colorado couple dealing with Alzheimer’s joins host Dominic Dezzutti.

The focus for this special presentation is on Alzheimer’s research and caregiving.

the film

THE SUM TOTAL OF OUR MEMORY: FACING ALZHEIMER’S TOGETHER follows three married couples, each with one partner with Alzheimer’s and one caregiver, as they share their family’s challenges, coping mechanisms and successes as they progress through the stages of Alzheimer’s. Her film captures the kind of unvarnished and candid discussions that emerge in dealing with the disease, and illustrate that there are ways that families develop to help cope with the challenges.

Klutinis’ inspiration for the film was born from her personal experience: her husband was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 2010.

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the discussion

Alzheimer’s disease is arguably the greatest single challenge facing the global healthcare system in the coming decades. The No. 6 killer of people in the United States and the only leading disease without a prevention, treatment or cure, Alzheimer’s affects 5.4 million people in the U.S. today (47 million globally), with totals expected to top 16 million by 2050 (132 million worldwide).

In Colorado, 67,000 people are currently living with Alzheimer’s. With a 37 percent growth rate of the disease, totals in Colorado will top 92,000 by 2025.

Alzheimer’s also has an enormous impact on the healthcare system and Medicare funding. Nearly $1 of every $5 in Medicare funding is spent on people with Alzheimer’s and other dementias. By 2050, that is projected to be $1 of every $3.