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Alzheimer's: A Baby Boomer Epidemic

Someone is diagnosed in this country with Alzheimer's every 70 seconds.

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And most of all, I have hope that Congress will do the right thing, the courageous thing -- and use new The Alzheimer's Study Group's report as a roadmap for the real legislation we need, to stem the tide of what promises to be a horrific epidemic -- the disease itself, and its impact on our families and our health care system.

Many of us know of someone who is struggling with this disease in their family. We have seen the pain in the eyes of someone who has to watch powerlessly as it takes their loved one down and sometimes even tears at the fabric of the family itself. It will take courage to implement these bold recommendations. But I know that if we make that major commitment to brilliant scientists like the ones I have met in laboratories around the country -- they will produce the drugs to slow Alzheimer's down -- and perhaps even prevent it.

So let's act now and do what we have to do -- to spare millions of Americans in the future the pain of watching someone they love die a mysterious death on the installment plan. If we do -- I am convinced -- we Baby Boomers will be the generation who tells our grandchildren that believe it or not, there once was a time when there was no cure for Alzheimer's.

Maria Shriver is an Emmy Award Winning journalist, best-selling author and First Lady of the State of California.

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