Economic burden of Alzheimer disease and managed care considerations

Am J Manag Care. 2020 Aug;26(8 Suppl):S177-S183. doi: 10.37765/ajmc.2020.88482.


Alzheimer disease is the most common cause of dementia and the fifth leading cause of death in adults older than 65 years. The estimated total healthcare costs for the treatment of Alzheimer disease in 2020 is estimated at $305 billion, with the cost expected to increase to more than $1 trillion as the population ages. Most of the direct costs of care for Alzheimer disease are attributed to skilled nursing care, home healthcare, and hospice care. Indirect costs of care, including quality of life and informal caregiving, are likely underestimated and are associated with significant negative societal and personal burden. Managed care organizations are in a unique position to develop utilization strategies that would positively impact early diagnosis and treatment to lead to better outcomes and lower costs for patients, caregivers, and the healthcare system. Additionally, the recent inclusion of Alzheimer disease diagnoses into risk corridor calculations by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services may encourage Medicare Advantage organizations to invest in programs that aid in its early detection and diagnosis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Alzheimer Disease* / diagnosis
  • Alzheimer Disease* / economics
  • Alzheimer Disease* / therapy
  • Caregivers
  • Cost of Illness*
  • Health Care Costs*
  • Humans
  • Managed Care Programs*
  • Medicare
  • Quality of Life
  • United States