ALZHEIMER’S: Baby Boomers Will Create Disease ‘Tidal Wave’
By 2025, "thousands of aging baby boomers" will develop Alzheimer's, and 14 million will succumb to the disease, according to the Alzheimer's Association, USA Today reports. According to an analysis of Census data, within the next 25 years, 827,392 Californians will develop Alzheimer's, followed by 712,962 Florida residents and 552,651 Texans. About 35% of people develop Alzheimer's by age 75; by age 85, nearly half of all people develop the fatal disease. Speaking on behalf of the association, Maureen Reagan, daughter of former President Ronald Reagan, told the Senate Appropriations subcommittee on health yesterday that more funding is needed to find a cure for the disease. She said, "This disease is a thief that sneaks into the brain and robs its victims of so much of what is precious about life." Releasing the analysis yesterday, the Alzheimer's Association hopes to convince Congress to earmark an additional $100 million to fight the disease. Association Chief Medical Adviser Steven DeKosky told the committee that "the inevitable tidal wave of cases among baby boomers" threatens to "trash Medicare and Medicaid." He said, "We have to start multiple clinical trials right now. Otherwise, we'll wind up in the middle of 2020 with no answers" (Sternberg, 3/22).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.