Alzheimer's Makes Care 3 Times as Costly

By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Mar 24, 2009 10:49 AM CDT
Caring for Alzheimer's patients can get expensive.   (Shutterstock)
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(Newser) – The health-care costs of Alzheimer’s patients are more than triple those of other older people, and that doesn’t include billions of hours of unpaid care from family members, a new report suggests. Compared with other people aged 65 and older, those with the mind-destroying disease are much more often hospitalized and treated in skilled-nursing centers.

It all adds up to at least $33,007 in annual costs per patient, compared with $10,603 without Alzheimer’s, according to the Alzheimer’s Association. The numbers are based on 2004 Medicare and insurance data; today’s figures are likely higher. “These statistics paint a really grim picture of what’s going to happen … unless we invest in solutions” to delay or prevent the disease, an association exec said.