Alzheimer's caregiving pushes many into debt
According to a new report by Caring.com, almost one out of four people caring for a loved one with Alzheimer's disease say the financial demands of doing so have driven them into debt.
The survey also found that 42 percent of family members who care for a relative with either Alzheimer's or dementia spend at least $20,000 a year on caregiving, including out-of-pocket costs for assisted living, professional in-home caregivers, medications and medical bills, incontinence products, transportation and devices to keep patients from wandering, Of that group, at least a third said they spend at least $30,000 a year.
While a majority of caregivers pay for the relatives care out-of-pocket, 51percent use their relative’s savings, 42 percent use their relative’s health plan, 33 percent use government benefits, 16 use a credit card and 10 percent use long-term care insurance.
Almost 97 percent of the close to 1,000 people who responded to the survey said that caregiving for a person with Alzheimer's has affected their marriages and friednships and 76 percent said their own personal well-being had declined.
More than 5 million Americans are now living with Alzheimer's disease. That number is expected to triple as the Baby Boom ages.