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Americans are spending $226 billion annually to treat the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias.senior woman and a book

If left unchecked, this could pose a big threat to the healthcare system. In the U.S., there are 5.3 million people diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. The majority of these people are seniors age 65 or older, which means the disease will climb significantly as the baby boomers get older.

That aging of America has the Alzheimer’s Association estimating that the number of Alzheimer’s patients in the U.S. will reach 7 million people by 2025, and double that by 2050, ultimately costing Americans $1.1 trillion.

Last year, more than 17.9 billion hours were spent by family and friends caring for Alzheimer’s patients. That unpaid care works out to a $217.7 billion economic cost to our country, as well as the $9.7 billion in costs associated with caring for caregivers. Americans spending on Alzheimer’s treatment is borne heavily by government, particularly Medicare.

Currently, about $1 of every $5 spent by Medicare is on Alzheimer’s treatment. By 2025, this could account for $1 out of every $3.

In 2012, the total out-of-pocket costs associated with caring for Alzheimer’s disease patients totaled $44 billion. If we break down the cost of care per patient per year, it costs an average $47,752 per year to care for an Alzheimer’s patient. If that patient is being cared for by a residential facility, the cost sky-rockets to $75,217 per year.


Excerpt taken from
The Motley Fool