An extensive study regarding the costs of caring for patients with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease was recently published in The New England Journal of Medicine. The study which was led by the RAND Corporation produced findings that cannot be ignored by current and future generations. The number of new patients coupled with their cost of care, are turning dementia and Alzheimer cases into two of the most costly diseases in the United States.
The costs of caring for dementia and Alzheimer’s patients are particularly high due to the chronic, progressive, and long-term nature of these diseases. According to the study, the costs of care for dementia and Alzheimer’S patient’s in 2010 was $109 billion, as compared to $102 billion for heart disease and $77 billion for cancer. In addition, 15% (or approximately 3.8 million) people over the age of 71have one of these cognitive disorders! In the next 25 years, it is estimated that the number of people diagnosed with dementia or Alzheimer’s will grow to over 9 million.
If a family member is showing signs of the onset of dementia or Alzheimer’s you need to contact a medical professional immediately. Also, it is very important to seek advice from an Elder Law attorney about options for care, and preservation of assets and income from the extreme costs illustrated by this recent study.