Worldwide cost of Alzheimer's more than 1% of world's GDP

21/09/2010

Dr Mesadieu manages HelpAge International’s support to nursing homes in Haiti, many of which care for people with Alzheimer’s disease. Dr Mesadieu manages HelpAge International’s support to nursing homes in Haiti, many of which care for people with Alzheimer’s disease. Frederic Dupoux / HelpAge International 2010 Today is World Alzheimer's Day and The World Alzheimer Report 2010, launched by Alzheimer Disease International (ADI), provides the clearest, most comprehensive global picture yet of the economic impact of Alzheimer's disease and dementia.

The number of people with dementia is expected to double by 2030, and more than triple by 2050.

But the costs of caring for people with dementia are likely to rise even faster, especially in the developing world, as more formal social care systems emerge and rising incomes lead to higher care costs.

Mark Gorman, Director of Strategy at HelpAge International says:

"HelpAge partners, particularly those agencies providing age-care services, are seeing increasing cases of dementia among their older clients. As people live longer in all countries, living with dementia is an increasing challenge, both for people with the disease and their carers. As the ADI report shows, there are huge costs involved in care giving, which poor households can ill-afford.

Governments and (where relevant) employers need to recognise the costs of care in lost working time and health problems for carers. Providing effective health and social support services will be cheaper over time than the rising economic and social costs which countries will pay as the Alzheimer's epidemic grows.

HelpAge has a formal partnership with ADI, and together we are developing approaches to support people living with dementia and those caring for them."

ADI's report calls on the World Health Organization to declare dementia as a world health priority.

You can find the report at http://www.alz.co.uk/worldreport

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