The number of people with Alzheimer’s disease, a degenerative brain disease and the most common form of dementia, will rise by at least 14% in all 50 states over the next eight years. However, the rate of increase will be higher in some states than others, according to a recent report from the Alzheimer’s Association, placing greater financial stress on health care programs and boosting the need for caregivers.
Alaska is projected to have the biggest increase in Alzheimer’s cases, from 7,100 in 2015 to 11,000 in 2017, or a 54.9% jump. Arizona, Nevada, Vermont, and Utah round out the top five with projected increases of at least 40% each. Iowa is expected to have the lowest increase, from 64,000 to 73,000, or 14.1%.
> Increase in Alzheimer’s, 2017-2025: 33.3%
> Pct. of 65+ pop. with Alzheimer’s: 9.7% (2nd lowest)
> Population 65+: 13.0% (5th lowest)
> Pct. of 65+ pop. in good health: 82.1% (3rd highest)
> Avg. retirement income: $28,761 (6th highest)
Alzheimer’s primarily affects the elderly, and Colorado is a relatively young state. Elderly state residents comprise 13.0% of the population, the fifth lowest share, and only 9.7% of these individuals have Alzheimer’s, the second lowest share. At the current rate, the state’s elderly population will grow by 32.7% by 2025, the second fastest rate compared with other states and well above the national average rate of approximately 25%.
The state appears better equipped than most to handle the projected increase in Alzheimer’s patients. For every Colorado resident afflicted with Alzheimer’s, there are 3.5 caregivers — one of the highest caregiver to patient ratios of any state.
24/7 reviewed the Alzheimer’s Association “2017 Alzheimer’s Disease Facts and Figures” report to find for each state the projected percentage increase in the number of people with Alzheimer’s over the next eight years. States in the West and Southeast are expected to have the largest percentage increases in the number of people with Alzheimer’s between 2017 and 2025.