MINNEAPOLIS - A new report by the Alzheimer's Association shows that the cost of caring for patients with Alzheimer's or dementia has risen to $259 billion. This includes total payments for health care, long-term assistance and hospice care. Also according to the report the out-of-pocket costs for seniors with Alzheimer's and dementia is almost five times more than for seniors without the disease ($10,315 versus $2,232)
The 2017 Alzheimer's Disease Facts and Figures report also reviewed the impact the disease has on families and caregivers. Over 92,000 Minnesotans age 65 and older suffer with the disease.
More than 15 million Americans provide unpaid care for patients. Of the caregivers who provide more than 40 hours a week 69 percent are women.
The study found that the stress of caring for a dementia or Alzheimer's patient takes a toll on the caregiver. About 35 percent of caregivers reported that their health has gotten worse due to responsibilities related to taking care of the patient. That's in contrast to about 19 percent of caregivers of patients without dementia.
There will be a "Meeting of the Minds Dementia" conference on March 18 at the St. Paul RiverCentre.
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