TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Today, Department of Elder Affairs’ (DOEA) Secretary Michelle Branham thanks Governor DeSantis and the Florida Legislature for their continued commitment to enhancing services that support seniors. The signing of the Framework for Freedom Budget marked a significant increase in the Department of Elder Affairs’ budget, a testament to the Governor’s dedication in maintaining an infrastructure that supports older residents as more and more Americans flock to the Sunshine State.

“From the beginning of his tenure, our Governor has not wavered in his commitment to seniors. I’m so proud that we continue to lead the nation in state funding for Alzheimer’s disease, which has always been a priority. This tremendous dedication resulted in a groundbreaking treatment in one of our Florida hospitals earlier this year and offers renewed hope and promise to the 580,000 Floridians living with this cruel disease,” said Secretary Michelle Branham. “We have also secured additional support for home and community-based services that will assist our cherished older Floridians in aging in the place of their choosing. Florida’s population is growing rapidly, so we are thankful for the Governor and Legislature in their continued commitment to support the expanding needs that come with such a large senior population.”

Highlights for Florida seniors in the 2023-2024 budget under the Department of Elder Affairs include:

  • $12.5 million increase for Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias services to expand the work of the state’s 17 Memory Disorder Clinics and service providers, which assist residents and caregivers affected by the disease;
  • More than $1 million to expand the Florida Alzheimer’s Center of Excellence, an initiative announced by Governor DeSantis last year that provides support to families with an Alzheimer’s diagnosis to gain access to resources and clinical trials early on in their dementia journey;
  • $5 million increase to expand the Community Care for the Elderly and Home Care for the Elderly Programs to care for more seniors in home and community-based settings, which enables them to continue living in the place of their choosing and delays or eliminates the need for them to utilize a long-term care setting;
  • Over $400,000 for Hope Florida – A Pathway to Purpose to support Hope Navigators and the Hope Heroes volunteer program to connect seniors to resources and support within private, non-profit, volunteer, and faith-based communities; and
  • Nearly $500,000 for the Alzheimer’s Association’s Brain Bus to provide services and outreach to more rural areas of the state for early detection and prevention of Alzheimer’s disease.

About the Florida Department of Elder Affairs: The Florida Department of Elder Affairs, the State Unit on Aging, helps Florida’s elders to remain healthy, safe, and independent. The Department provides most direct services through the state’s 11 Area Agencies on Aging and local service providers to deliver essential services to a vital segment of the population. For more information, please visit www.elderaffairs.org.