The Rising Cost of Alzheimer’s Care

There are currently nearly 7 million people in the U.S. living with Alzheimer’s disease, and 11.5 million unpaid caregivers that support them. According to the Alzheimer’s Association’s 2024 Disease Facts and Figures Report, the cost for Alzheimer’s care has increased to $360 billion, which is $15 billion more than the year before. It is estimated that these costs will equate to $1.1 trillion by the year 2050.

With over 18 billion hours of unpaid help being dedicated solely to Alzheimer’s caregiving, employees who double as caregivers need as much support as possible to cut down on the stress and cost of these additional responsibilities.

Alzheimer’s Care Cost Breakdown

The report illustrated in no uncertain terms that “dementia is one of the costliest conditions of society.” The costs outlined also do not take into account the unpaid labor and hours dedicated by the caregivers themselves.

Although Medicare and Medicaid cover about $230 billion in healthcare and long-term care for those with dementia, this accounts for only 64% of the total cost. On the other hand, out-of-pocket spending lands at just over $90 million, or 25% of the total cost. In comparison, Medicare beneficiaries of the same age paid about three times less for their care.

On an individual level, Medicare beneficiaries with dementia paid an average of $10,289 out-of-pocket annually for care and services that weren’t otherwise covered. For caregivers, research found that out-of-pocket and informal caregiving costs for a family member with dementia cost about twice as much than for those without dementia. Not only that, but these costs increased exponentially year over year following the initial dementia diagnosis.

How Homethrive Helps Alzheimer’s Caregivers

Healthcare Navigation Challenges

Between the primary care providers, specialists, social services, and medication management, caregivers are also tasked with navigating a complex healthcare system that often does not provide the information or support that caregivers need.

Homethrive is a family caregiving benefit that strives to take some of the work and worry out of caregiving by making it smarter and easier. Homethrive Care Guides provide live support by finding services for those diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, and help coordinate and manage healthcare concerns for care recipients.

The Homethrive digital platform also includes product and service recommendations, access to a Medicare specialist, a content library with information and resources for caregivers and aging adults. With Homethrive, caregivers have the support they need for navigating an Alzheimer’s diagnosis.

Caregiver Stress and Mental Health

According to the report, 7 of 10 caregivers felt that coordinating Alzheimer’s care was stressful, and over half of the respondents stated that navigating healthcare was a challenge.

The top five stressors for Alzheimer’s caregivers are broken down as follows:

  • Cost (42%)
  • Coordinating with doctors (36%)
  • Securing appointments (35%)
  • Getting help taking a break (35%)
  • Finding the right doctors (32%)

Homethrive Care Guides can help secure and coordinate appointments and find doctors, specialists, and respite care for caregiving employees. They can also tailor their research to any situation, and help find affordable services in you or your loved one’s area.

There are several ways that employers can support the family caregivers on their team. Starting a caregiver ERG, providing flexible or summer hours, or including caregiving benefits in a benefits package can show employees that their organization values and supports them. As the number of Alzheimer’s caregivers grows, organizations can give them the tools they need to balance these challenging responsibilities.

Find out more ways to support your employee caregivers by learning about the benefits that can help

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