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The worldwide costs of dementia in 2019

Wimo A, Seeher K, Cataldi R, Cyhlarova E, Dielemann JL, Frisell O, Guerchet M, Jönsson L, Malaha AK, Nichols E, Pedroza P, Prince M, Knapp M, Dua T


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.

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

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.

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.

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.

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Alzheimers Dementia, 2023
First published online 8 Jan 2023
DOI: 10.1002/alz.12901