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The Cost of Alzheimer's
By Correy Robertson, May 20, 2010 01:59 PM
If we needed another reason to work to improve treatment of Alzheimer's disease, check out these alarming statistics.
The Alzheimer's Association released a report yesterday - Changing the Trajectory of Alzheimer's Disease: A National Imperative - that that shows that "in absence of disease-modifying treatments the cumulative costs of care for people with Alzheimer's from 2010 to 2050 will exceed $20 trillion." Possibly even more alarming, the study found that the number of Americans aged 65 and older suffering from the disease will increase from the current 5.1 million to 13.5 million in the same time frame.
What is really interesting is that the study takes a look at the impact of hypothetical developments - such as a treatment that delays the onset of Alzheimer's by 5 years or a treatment that slows the progression of the disease - and what would happen if those breakthroughs came about in 2015. Needless to say, the number of people that would be affected by the disease dramatically decreases, and with that, so would cost.
Alzheimer's disease affects so many lives, and the Alzheimer's Association says that addressing the "chronic underinvestment in research" into treatments for the disease is the only way things are going to change. Check out the full report here.