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Dementia Costs Tops Those for Heart Disease or Cancer
Posted: Thursday, April 4, 2013 5:59 PM
Joined: 12/6/2011
Posts: 3326

(Source: CBSNews) - The average cost of care for a patient with dementia can exceed $50,000 a year, according to new research.

A study published April 3 in the New England Journal of Medicine that tracked elderly adults found dementia can represent a significant financial burden not only on individual families but society at large. Researchers determined the annual costs associated with a patient with dementia were between $41,689 and $56,290. That added up to between $159 billion and $215 billion in American health care dollars, $11 billion of which is paid for by Medicare, the study found.

"Our calculations suggest that the aging of the U.S. population will result in an increase of nearly 80 percent in total societal costs per adult by 2040," wrote the researchers.

Rising rates and a lack of an effective cure against dementia prompted the Obama administration to unveil its National Alzheimer's Plan, which kicked off last May, to find a better treatment for the devastating disease by 2025. The administration also announced yesterday a $100 million research initiative to map the human brain in the hopes of better understanding how it works, and how to stave off disease.

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