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Huntington business owner: ‘Dementia friendly’ courtesies could benefit community

By BISHOP NASH

The Herald-Dispatch

David Nisbet, head of Dementia Friendly Huntington, speaks during a Huntington Regional Chamber of Commerce event title “Dementia Awareness and Creating a Dementia Friendly City” on Tuesday in Huntington.
(Herald-Dispatch photo by Sholten Singer)

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. — When businesses assess the needs of their clientele, dementia doesn’t often top the list, if it’s even considered at all.

But more than 5 million Americans suffer from dementia, with an estimated 70 percent of elderly cases caused by Alzheimer’s disease, and it’s projected to affect millions more as the population ages. By the sheer number of lives it touches – not to mention those of countless more caregivers and loved ones – dementia care is finding its way into business practices beyond simply health care providers.

That’s the message David Nisbet, founder of Dementia Friendly Huntington, presented to the Huntington Regional Chamber of Commerce over lunch Tuesday afternoon in downtown Huntington.

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