Purple outline scan of a brain

Alzheimer’s: Every Minute Counts

Alzheimer’s disease has grown to be one of the most pressing and tragic public health issues facing the U.S. With no known cure and the number of people affected expected to triple by 2050, the Alzheimer’s Association estimates that by mid-century someone in the U.S will develop Alzheimer’s disease every 33 seconds.

February 11, 2017 | Source: Alternet | by Dr. Joseph Mercola

Alzheimer’s disease has grown to be one of the most pressing and tragic public health issues facing the U.S. With no known cure and the number of people affected expected to triple by 2050, the Alzheimer’s Association estimates that by mid-century someone in the U.S will develop Alzheimer’s disease every 33 seconds.1

In the documentary above, “Alzheimer’s: Every Minute Counts,” you can see firsthand the steep social and economic consequences of this disease, along with its ability to completely overwhelm not only the patient but also their caregivers. Families dealing with this disease are families in crisis.

“This ‘tsunami’ of Alzheimer’s will not only be a profound human tragedy, but an overwhelming economic one as well. Due to the length of time people live with the illness and need care, it’s the most expensive medical condition in the U.S.,” the film’s website explains, adding:2

“Future costs for Alzheimer’s threaten to bankrupt Medicare, Medicaid and the life savings of millions of Americans. It is estimated that if the number of patients triples as projected in the years ahead, the costs to care for them will exceed $1.1 trillion.”

Roles of Mother and Daughter Reversed

Via three featured personal stories, the documentary takes you into the lives of those living with the realities of Alzheimer’s every day. Aside from the emotional and physical toll, many struggle to pay for the long-term care this disease requires, while others are isolated in rural communities without access to care at all.

There, simply “the risk of wandering off can be fatal,” the film poignantly points out. While Alzheimer’s disease is typically diagnosed in people aged 65 and over (5.2 million of the 5.4 million Americans living with Alzheimer’s disease are 65 or older), about 200,000 people have younger-onset Alzheimer’s.3

This is also addressed in the film, via the story of Daisy Duarte, the full-time caregiver for her mother Sonia, who was diagnosed with a genetic form of early-onset Alzheimer’s five years ago. “Daisy also carries the gene, so she is witnessing her own future as she cares for her mother,” the film explains.