Millennials can brag about dominating the workforce now, but Baby Boomers are starting to dominate the retirement homes — and if the most recent statistics about Alzheimer’s are of any concern, then the Millennials could be facing an uphill battle in terms of caring for an aging population that’s likely to suffer from Alzheimer’s disease on a massive scale.
LiveScience and CBS News have reported on a new study which predicts that approximately 10 million Baby Boomers in the U.S. will be living with Alzheimer’s disease by the year 2040, and that this number will skyrocket to 28 million by 2050.
Currently there are an estimated five million adults in the U.S. living with Alzheimer’s, but as the Boomer generation ages, this number is expected to increase dramatically. The generation’s exodus from the workplace has already begun, as many Baby Boomers have already retired or are planning on retiring within the next few years.
By the year 2020, the majority of the generation will be at least 65 years old, comprising a whopping 20% of the total U.S. population. By 2050, according to the Alzheimer’s Association, all surviving Baby Boomers will be at least 85 years old. It is around age 85, the Alzheimer’s Association has stated, that the disease typically starts developing at a rapid rate.
It is possible for these numbers to go down, but only if early intervention is accessible, the Alzheimer’s Association reported. Researchers have already begun looking for a viable treatment in earnest, but there is still no successful program that is able to push back the onset of Alzheimer’s.
Additionally, LiveScience noted, the financial implications on their own are pretty scary. Baby Boomers have already begun turning 65 and entering in the Medicare program; if 10 million of these Americans have Alzheimer’s by 2020, as has been predicted, then the program will require at least $11.86 billion.
If the trend continues, Medicare spending would reach $328 billion by 2040, which would be an estimated 24% of total Medicare spending.