Healthy Brain Initiative

National Healthy Brain Initiative

enews banner graphic2The project establishes IA2 as a national hub for Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias (ADRD) serving Indian country. IA2 will provide training, technical assistance, subject matter expertise, and resources for tribes, tribal leadership, healthcare and public health staff, Urban Indian Health Centers and organizations, and tribal elder services advocates across the country. Activities are designed to advance community engagement and help build capacity among tribes and tribal member-serving organizations, promote healthy cognitive aging strategies across the lifespan, and foster dementia-capable tribal communities.

Project partners include J. Neil Henderson (Choctaw), director of the University of Minnesota’s Wisdom Keepers Medical Discovery Team; Tassy Parker (Seneca), director of the Univ. of New Mexico’s Center for Native Health; Larry Curley (Navajo), executive director of the National Indian Council on Aging; and Mike Splaine, owner and principal of Splaine Consulting.

IA2’s project will address two strategies and eight action items from the Road Map for Indian Countrytaking a multidisciplinary public health approach. It will identify and feature locally-tailored, culturally relevant activities to address Native disparities in the burden of ADRD.

For the past three years, IA2 has played a pivotal role in the development of the Road Map for Indian Country and engaged in meaningful work to address ADRD. IA2 conducted national webinars and focus groups for tribal health and senior program directors culminating in a report for the Alzheimer’s Association that contributed significantly to the Road Map.

Access and View IA2 Co-Created  Healthy Heart, Healthy Brain Materials  printicon

NEW: IA2 can now print on demand flyers and posters from the IA2 / ASTHO and NCUIH suite of materials below and send directly to your tribal office or urban Indian health center! Print requests are limited to $250 in materials per tribe or urban Indian center. To place your order now or see pricing per item click the print icon to the right or click here.  

IA2 previously created a state-of-the art suite of materials, with funding from the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO) as part of a CDC-funded initiative to inform and educate tribal community members about the direct relationship between heart and brain health.

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Two page flyer

Vertical poster

Horizontal poster

Materials are intended for American Indian and Alaska Native communities and can be posted in senior centers and inter-tribal organizations, healthcare facilities, administrative offices, tribal newspapers/radio stations, and as mailers to tribal members. You can disseminate flyers within healthcare offices, senior centers, and through events such as health fairs, festivals, and other relevant affairs.

Healthcare provider guide

The provider guide is intended to support healthcare providers and administrators to inform and guide their conversations with American Indian and Alaska Native patients about the connections between brain health, including risk factors, protective health behaviors, and key messages. 

Four radio PSAs featuring popular former host of Native American Calling, Harlan McKasato, are available for use on state and regional radio networks. 

Other Available Resources for Native American Elders, Caregivers, and Healthcare Providers

Savvy Caregiver in Indian Country Training Materials

Alzheimer’s Association Indian Country Resources

National Indian Health Board Resources

National Council of Urban Indian Health Resources

Savvy Caregiver in Indian Country Training Materials

This training is designed for trainers working with American Indian and Alaska Native caregivers who care for an elder with memory loss and thinking problems (dementia). One of the main themes of the Savvy Caregiver in Indian Country Trainer’s Manual is to teach caregivers to know the stage of dementia corresponding to their loved one’s functioning. Knowing how to determine the stage allows the caregiver to use activates and tasks that fit the elder’s changing abilities.

Alzheimer’s Association Road Map for Indian Country Resource Page








National Indian Health Board Brain Health Website
NIHB ADRD Talking Points







National Council of Urban Indian Health Wisdom Keeper Webpage

NCUIH Wisdom Keeper



This webpage is supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of a financial assistance award totaling $348,711 with 100 percent funded by CDC/HHS. The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by CDC/HHS, or the U.S. Government.