Holmes: Report reveals impact of Alzheimer’s in Delaware


The Alzheimer’s Association’s 2024 Alzheimer’s Disease Facts and Figures report reveals alarming trends demanding urgent attention. With the number of Americans affected by Alzheimer’s steadily rising, the impact on individuals, families and the health care system is profound.

An estimated 6.9 million Americans 65 and older have Alzheimer’s. In Delaware alone, 22,300 people were living with the disease, as of 2020.

The financial burden is staggering, projected at $360 billion nationwide, with 31,000 Delaware caregivers contributing 46 million hours of care valued at $909 million, while facing their own health challenges.

Compounding these challenges is a shortage of dementia care specialists and direct care workers. States like Delaware face critical shortages in health care professionals trained to support individuals with dementia and their caregivers.

It’s clear that comprehensive solutions are needed. Initiatives to increase funding for research, support caregiver respite programs and expand access to dementia care specialists are essential. Additionally, standardized training in dementia care navigation is imperative to equip health care professionals with the skills needed to support those affected by Alzheimer’s.

As a society, we must prioritize action to confront the growing impact of Alzheimer’s disease. The future well-being of millions of Americans depends on our collective response to this urgent public health crisis.

View the full report at alz.org/facts and find support through the Alzheimer’s Association’s 24/7 Helpline at 800-272-3900.

Erica Holmes

Programs manager, Alzheimer’s Association’s Delaware Valley chapter


Reader reactions, pro or con, are welcomed at civiltalk@iniusa.org.

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