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New research projects major increase in Alzheimer's care costs for England

New research shows that unless more effective treatments are developed for Alzheimer's disease and other causes of cognitive impairment, there will be a substantial rise in the demand for long-term care services in England. The research also concludes that if treatments developed were to reduce the percentage of older people with severe cognitive impairment by only 1% per year, this would broadly offset the increasing long-term care costs due to rising numbers of older people.

The results, from a new report by the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), will be launched by LSE's Professor Martin Knapp at the conference "A Biological and Socio-Economic Assessment of the Consequences of an Ageing Population" to be held at the British Academy in London on Thursday 23rd January 2003.

The independent report, commissioned by the Alzheimer's Research Trust, is the first to look at the impact that cognitive impairment* could have on future long-term care costs in England under a wide range of scenarios.

Researchers compared figures for 1998 with their projected figures for the year 2031, under a range of assumptions about future mortality and prevalence rates and future patterns of care. The study shows that the number of people with cognitive impairment in England is likely to rise by 66% from 461,000 to 765,000 between 1998 and 2031, faster than the number of people with physical disability only. The report implies that demand for long-term care will rise at a faster rate among those with cognitive impairment than projections based on the overall demand for long-term care would suggest.

THE COST OF LONG-TERM CARE SERVICES

The report also projects that the costs to provide long-term care to older people with cognitive impairment will more than double in real terms, from around 4.6 billion to nearly 11 billion in 2031, to keep pace with demographic pressures. This represents an increase from 0.6% to 0.7% of Gross D
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Contact: Harriet Millward
hmillward@alzheimers-research.org.uk
44-122-384-3899
Alzheimer's Research Trust
22-Jan-2003


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