In 2015, more than 413,000 Australians live with dementia. This number is currently estimated to increase to almost one million by 2050.
The figures associated with Alzheimer’s, while alarming, don’t reflect the true number of people impacted by the disease and can’t express the challenges a family goes through in living through their loved one’s diagnosis. They can however highlight the urgent need to find a cure or treatment.
Alzheimer Australia’s 2009 report Dementia: facing the epidemic, showed that:
- The cost of dementia care was estimated at $5.4 billion.
- Lost productivity born by individuals, business and government was estimated at $881 million.
- The spending on dementia by the 2060’s was projected to be $83 million, and would outstrip that of any other health condition.
- Between 2008 to 2029 a 76% increase of required carers for people with dementia was expected.
- The cost of replacing family carers with paid carers in 2008 was estimated at $5.5 billion per annum.
- It was estimated that one million Australians directly supported people with dementia.
At that stage dementia was the fourth largest cause of death. It is now the second.