Caregivers in Los Angeles Count the Cost of Alzheimer’s Disease
Alzheimer’s disease is not just one of the most mysterious illnesses in the world; it’s also one of the most expensive. Of course, it’s impossible to put a price tag on a human life, but experts in the medical field have analyzed the hours of lost work, medical care, travel expenses, and other financial burdens that Alzheimer’s disease costs people every year. Below, caregivers in Los Angeles highlight some of these expenses.
Federal programs are responsible for a huge part of the cost of caring for Alzheimer’s patients. Over half of the annual cost is covered by Medicare—an estimated $113 billion in 2014. Medicaid covers another $37 billion, leaving another $64 billion to be covered by patients themselves and their families. Almost one-fifth of all Medicare spending goes toward Alzheimer’s disease. These cost reports show, in concrete numbers, one aspect of the pressure that the disease puts on the national healthcare system. With a cure for Alzheimer’s, billions of dollars would be freed up to use for other purposes.
Families obviously feel the “out-of-pocket” expenses much more keenly than the costs to national programs. These expenses include lost wages, lost opportunities, and fees paid for professional eldercare. In Los Angeles, a reliable caregiving service with affordable rates makes a huge difference for families struggling to pay for Alzheimer’s care.
Other Critical Points: Eldercare in Los Angeles
The report from the Alzheimer’s Association noted some other important points about the disease. Women are almost twice as likely as men to develop Alzheimer’s, and a woman’s risk of developing it stands at 1 in 6. Alzheimer’s is officially the 6th highest cause of death in the U.S., but many experts think that we are still not aware of just how many people die from it every year.