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Tags: dementia | cancer | baby boomers | healthcare

Dementia More Costly Than Cancer

By Friday, 04 March 2016 04:10 PM Current | Bio | Archive

Any family that has cared for a relative with dementia knows the emotional and the financial burdens it brings. A study published in the New England Journal of Medicine indicates that the financial costs of dementia are even higher than incurred for either cancer or heart disease.

Dr. Michael Hurd and his colleagues at the RAND Center for the Study of Aging in Santa Monica, Calif., estimated the societal costs of dementia (annual cost per person) ranging from $41,000 to $56,000, and the occurrence of dementia in 15 percent of people age 70 and older.

Most of these costs are not derived from direct medical care, but from the care provided at home or in long-term care facilities.

In the United States, these costs are expected to increase as the proportion of our population — the baby boom generation — ages, soaring from about $200 billion each year to about $500 billion by 2040.

Dr. Hurd noted that technological advances could reduce this burden. Telemedicine might reduce the number of staff members required for care, and home assistance devices could help older adults with mild cognitive symptoms remain independent longer.

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A study published in the New England Journal of Medicine indicates that the financial costs of dementia are even higher than incurred for either cancer or heart disease.
dementia, cancer, baby boomers, healthcare
Friday, 04 March 2016 04:10 PM
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