The Dementia Plague

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MIT’s Technology Review has one of the scariest articles I think I have ever read.

I am well aware about the enormity of the problems created by Dementia but I was shocked when I read the facts presented in this article.

The word that comes to mind is – hopeless.

For a measure of the enormity of issue read the following quote.

An estimated 36 million people worldwide currently suffer from dementia; experts predict the number will double, to approximately 70 million, by 2030 and triple by 2050. (China, India, and Latin America in particular face daunting medico-economic crises.)

Since the prevalence of the disease doubles with every five-year age increment after 65, projections for 2050 put the total global population at risk for dementia (people 65 or older) at two billion. The calculus is as grim as it is simple: as more people live longer, more slide into dementia.

Care for those patients currently costs $100 billion a year in the United States, with a projected cost over the next 40 years of $20 trillion; by 2050, the cost to U.S. society is projected to be $1 trillion a year.

I feel that it is wrong to even be raising the question but I must – the guaranteed rise in the number of people suffering from Dementia creates a massive business opportunity.

In most places the State will be hopeless at doing much about it so it will fall to the family and friends of sufferer or the sufferer themselves. I am not talking about a cure or even the drugs to slow the progress/onset of the condition but the aids and infrastructure that make life possible/more tolerable of all of those involved in the Dementia downward spiral. No wonder, the fear of Alzheimer’s long ago overtook the fear of Cancer amongst the over-50s

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