The worldwide costs of dementia in 2019

Alzheimers Dement. 2023 Jul;19(7):2865-2873. doi: 10.1002/alz.12901. Epub 2023 Jan 8.


Introduction: Dementia is a leading cause of death and disability globally. Estimating total societal costs demonstrates the wide impact of dementia and its main direct and indirect economic components.

Methods: We constructed a global cost model for dementia, presenting costs as cumulated global and regional costs.

Results: In 2019, the annual global societal costs of dementia were estimated at US $1313.4 billion for 55.2 million people with dementia, corresponding to US $23,796 per person with dementia. Of the total, US $213.2 billion (16%) were direct medical costs, US $448.7 billion (34%) direct social sector costs (including long-term care), and US $651.4 billion (50%) costs of informal care.

Discussion: The huge costs of dementia worldwide place enormous strains on care systems and families alike. Although most people with dementia live in low- and middle-income countries, highest total and per-person costs are seen in high-income countries.

Highlights: Global economic costs of dementia were estimated to reach US $1313.4 in 2019. Sixty-one percent of people with dementia live in low-and middle-income countries, whereas 74% of the costs occur in high-income countries. The impact of informal care accounts for about 50% of the global costs. The development of a long-term care infrastructure is a great challenge for low-and middle-income countries. There is a great need for more cost studies, particularly in low- and middle-income countries. Discussions of a framework for global cost comparisons are needed.

Keywords: Alzheimer´s disease; cost; cost-of-illness study; dementia; economics; informal care.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Cost of Illness
  • Dementia* / epidemiology
  • Dementia* / therapy
  • Health Care Costs
  • Humans