World Alzheimer’s Day

(WTNH)- Thursday, September 21 is World Alzheimer’s Day. James Sullivan is President & Managing Director of IKOR – Life Care Management Solutions in Westchester County, NY and Fairfield County, CT. IKOR provides life care management solutions to seniors and individuals with disabilities to assist them, their families, and other professionals who support them, providing medical management, healthcare advocacy and financial advocacy services.  Together through an interdisciplinary team of Registered Nurse Advocates, Personal Needs Coordinators and other personnel, we are a central point of contact, the quarterback for all medical and non-medical life care needs, providing expertise, medical and cognitive assessments, service coordination and quality oversight across the environmental, financial, medical and psychosocial aspects or their lives.

Alzheimer’s is a type of dementia that causes problems with memory, thinking and behavior. It is a progressive disease with symptoms developing slowly at first, and get worse over time, becoming severe enough to interfere with daily tasks.

  • Alzheimer’s is the most common form of dementia, a general term for memory loss and other cognitive abilities serious enough to interfere with daily life. Alzheimer’s disease accounts for 60 to 80 percent of dementia cases.
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  • Alzheimer’s is not a normal part of aging.The greatest known risk factor is increasing age, and the majority of people with Alzheimer’s are 65 and older. But Alzheimer’s is not just a disease of old age. Approximately 200,000 Americans under the age of 65 have younger-onset Alzheimer’s disease (also known as early-onset Alzheimer’s).
  • Alzheimer’s worsens over time.Alzheimer’s is a progressive disease, where dementia symptoms gradually worsen over a number of years. In its early stages, memory loss is mild, but with late-stage Alzheimer’s, individuals lose the ability to carry on a conversation and respond to their environment.
  • Alzheimer’s has no current cure, but treatments for symptoms are available and research continues.Although current Alzheimer’s treatments cannot stop Alzheimer’s from progressing, they can temporarily slow the worsening of dementia symptoms and improve quality of life for those with Alzheimer’s and their caregivers. Today, there is a worldwide effort under way to find better ways to treat the disease, delay its onset, and prevent it from developing.

Risk:

  • An estimated 5.5 million Americans of all ages have Alzheimer’s disease.
    • Of the estimated 5.5 million Americans living with Alzheimer’s dementia in 2017, an estimated 5.3 million, or 96% of those affected, are age 65 and older and approximately 200,000 individuals are under age 65 and have younger-onset Alzheimer’s.
  • One in 10 people age 65 and older (10 percent) has Alzheimer’s dementia.
  • Almost two-thirds of Americans with Alzheimer’s are women.
  • African-Americans are about twice as likely to have Alzheimer’s or other dementias as older whites.
  • Hispanics are about one and one-half times as likely to have Alzheimer’s or other dementias as older whites.
  • Alzheimer’s is the 6th leading cause of death in the United States. Those with Alzheimer’s live an average of 8 years after their symptoms become noticeable to others, but survival can range from 4 to 20 years, depending on age and other health conditions.
  • 2017 estimates put more than 5 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s
    • With demographics of our aging population by 2050, that number could more than triple to 16 million according to Alzheimer’s Association
    • It is important to note that although the numbers of American with Alzheimer’s is dramatically increasing, many studies also suggest that the “rate” of Americans with dementia has decreased with a diagnosed age of 80.7 in 2000 and 82.4 in 2012. [i]
  • Since 2000, deaths related to Alzheimer’s have increased by 89%, while death due to heart disease has decreased by 14%.
  • Every 66 seconds, someone in the US develops the disease…and 1 in 3 seniors die with Alzheimer’s or other dementia
    • Because of the increasing number of people age 65 and older in the United States, particularly the oldest-old, the number of new cases of Alzheimer’s and other dementias is projected to soar By 2050, someone will develop the disease every 33 seconds

Financial Costs:

  • In 2017, Alzheimer’s and other dementias cost the nation $259 Billion
    • By 2050, these numbers exceed $1.1 Trillion according to Alzheimer’s Association
  • Dementia care is the most expensive disease in America exceeding that of heart disease ($102B) and cancer ($77B) combined.
  • The Shriver Report: A Woman’s Nation Takes on Alzheimer’s interviewed caregivers of people with Alzheimer’s or other forms of dementia and found the average cost of care for an Alzheimer’s patient is $56,800 per year.
  • Total per-person health care and long-term care payments in 2016 for Medicare beneficiaries with Alzheimer’s or other dementias were over three times as great as payments for other Medicare beneficiaries.
    • Average per-person out-of-pocket costs for Alzheimer’s and other dementias are almost five times higher than average per-person payments for seniors without these conditions.
  • Loss of productivity
    • 15 million Americans provided unpaid care for those suffering from Alzheimer’s and other dementias
      • Estimated at 18.2 billion hours with an implied value of $230 Billion.
    • Impact on health of family, friends and other caregivers – 35% or higher of Alzheimer’s/dementia care givers report significant negative impacts on their own health and finances due to care responsibilities vs 19% of caregivers of non-dementia patients.
    • As the population of the United States ages, Alzheimer’s is becoming a more common cause of death. It is the only top 10 cause of death that cannot be prevented, cured or even slowed

 

 

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