Dementia is significantly affecting every health and social care system in the world.
- About 35 million people worldwide have dementia, and that figure is expected to double every 20 years, due to longer lifespans and an aging population.
- By the time we reach 85 years old, we have about a 50 percent chance of developing Alzheimer’s disease.
- The expense of taking care of an Alzheimer’s patient is highest in the United States, coming in at about $48,000.
- Alzheimer’s disease will cost the world more than $604 billion this year.
The World Alzheimer’s Report 2010, from Alzheimer’s Disease International (ADI), and reported on by CNN, was compiled from data collected around the world, and estimates from developing countries in Africa, Latin America, and Asia.
The $604 billion figure reflects the costs of medical care and the services provided by family members.
The ADI says many governments are unprepared for the challenges of caring for a population with such large numbers of dementia patients, and urge governments to recognize dementia as a health priority and invest in prevention and planning for the care of patients.
Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia affecting cognitive ability, memory, behavior, and the ability to perform common tasks. Although some people show symptoms before age 65, it primarily affects older people.
Dementia also has a tremendous impact on family members and friends — emotionally, socially, and financially. The financial impact on the family is difficult to quantify and is likely insufficiently reported.
People with dementia require a wide range of care, from assistance with daily living and personal care to around the clock supervision.
You can help! From The Petition Site
We need to address this growing human, social and economic burden with a comprehensive strategy. The National Alzheimer’s Project Act (NAPA) or S. 3036/H.R. 4689 would call for the creation of a national plan to solve the Alzheimer’s crisis.
The act will create a National Alzheimer’s Project Office and inter-agency Advisory Council to lead a campaign within the federal government to overcome the disease.
- You can read the complete ADI report, or just a summary, on The Alzheimer’s Association website
- Care2 Healthy & Green Living: Alzheimer’s
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