The extreme physical and emotional cost of Alzheimer’s disease is devastating to those affected, and if that wasn’t enough, Alzheimer’s takes a tremendous financial toll as well. According to a recent study published in the journal Annals of Internal Medicine, the financial cost of Alzheimer’s on both families and our healthcare system is outrageously high. We know just how devastating Alzheimer’s disease is, but realizing the presence of an economic burden in addition to the daily struggles of those living with or caring for someone with Alzheimer’s, is shocking.
Families are spending tens of thousands of dollars out of pocket to care for their loved ones affected by Alzheimer’s. The financial burden created by Alzheimer’s in the last five years of life is significantly larger than that of cancer, heart disease, and other conditions, making Alzheimer’s the most expensive disease in the nation. Alzheimer’s and other dementias cost the country $226 billion this year alone and costs related to Alzheimer’s are projected to increase to more than $1.1 trillion in 2050.
What can we do about the high cost of Alzheimer’s?
In order to lower the cost, we need to find new and better treatments for Alzheimer’s disease through the advancement of research. We need commitment from the federal government to increase funding for Alzheimer’s research. The government is currently funding less than $600 million annually. Leading scientists say a minimum of $2 billion a year for the next 10 years is necessary to make significant progress.
How can you help?
Let your voice be heard and advocate for the increase of Alzheimer’s research funding.
Visit www.alz.org/advocacy or call 800-272-3900 for more information on how to get involved.
For more information on Alzheimer’s costs, read the study here!: http://annals.org/article.aspx?articleid=2466364