Being touted as the first of the kind in the nation, the new program is based off a model Otsuka used for oncology with the University of Alabama at Birmingham.
The results of the program were revealed in a report from Otsuka released Tuesday during the announcement of the new project in Camden.
The partnership is focused on a new “navigator” program, in which care coordinators are trained to following through on patient care. These new certified positions have been trademarked Alzheimer’s Journey Coordinators.
Noting that the Rowan/Rutgers board is focused on “eds and meds” in the Camden and South Jersey region, Otsuka is proposing that the new program can help train local residents, and, “At this important moment in the region’s history, such a program could become part of the turnaround story.”
The area is of particular interest because of its demographics.
Kris Kolluri, CEO of the Rowan/Rutgers board, said the statistics show a higher likelihood of Alzheimer’s in the area.
“When you look at the statistics, minorities, both African-Americans and Hispanics, are at greater risk for getting Alzheimer’s, so we see there is a need from that standpoint,” Kolluri said. “But equally important, Camden also has an opportunity to train health care workers.”
The focus on eds and meds has led to a strong growth in industry employers in the region; they are the second-largest employers, Kolluri said.
“Forty percent of people that work in the Camden metropolitan area work in eds and meds,” Kolluri said.
The impact of the program has real dollars attached to it, both in revenue and investment potential.
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