States Where Alzheimer’s Is Soaring

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10. Idaho
> Increase in Alzheimer’s, 2017-2025: 37.5%
> Pct. of 65+ pop. with Alzheimer’s: 9.9% (4th lowest)
> Population 65+: 14.7% (19th lowest)
> Pct. of 65+ pop. in good health: 80.3% (5th highest)
> Avg. retirement income: $21,132 (7th lowest)

Largely as a consequence of the expected spike in Alzheimer’s cases, Medicaid costs of caring for those with Alzheimer’s disease will climb 47.8% in Idaho from 2017 to 2025. In the United States, some portion of medical costs in old age almost always come from personal and family savings, and low retirement incomes may also explain the large expected increase in Medicaid costs across the state. The typical retirement income in Idaho is currently $21,132 annually, the seventh lowest such income of all states.

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9. Wyoming
> Increase in Alzheimer’s, 2017-2025: 38.3%
> Pct. of 65+ pop. with Alzheimer’s: 11.4% (22nd lowest)
> Population 65+: 14.1% (8th lowest)
> Pct. of 65+ pop. in good health: 77.2% (20th highest)
> Avg. retirement income: $22,416 (19th lowest)

The number of people with Alzheimer’s disease in Wyoming will surge 38% by 2025, according to the Alzheimer’s Association. Large expected increases in Alzheimer’s almost always track closely with large projected increases in a state’s elderly population. Wyoming’s 65 and over population will grow from around 83,000 to approximately 116,800 by 2025, an increase of nearly 30%. By contrast, the elderly population will grow by roughly 25% nationwide over that time period. Medicaid costs in Wyoming are expected to climb even more, by 52.1% between 2017 and 2025.

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8. Florida
> Increase in Alzheimer’s, 2017-2025: 38.5%
> Pct. of 65+ pop. with Alzheimer’s: 13.2% (3rd highest)
> Population 65+: 19.5% (the highest)
> Pct. of 65+ pop. in good health: 77.1% (22nd highest)
> Avg. retirement income: $25,845 (17th highest)

Florida’s elderly population will grow by approximately 25% by 2025, about average. But the state already has the largest share of elderly population of all states — nearly 1 in every 5 Florida residents are 65 or older. The state’s older residents will continue to age for many years, and the risk of Alzheimer’s, which is considerably more common among the oldest members of the nation’s elderly population, will also inevitably increase.

There were 510,000 people with Alzheimer’s disease in Florida in 2017, and Medicaid costs for caring for people with the disease totaled $2.33 billion. Florida has 1.1 million caregivers, the third most in the nation.

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7. South Carolina
> Increase in Alzheimer’s, 2017-2025: 39.5%
> Pct. of 65+ pop. with Alzheimer’s: 10.8% (13th lowest)
> Population 65+: 16.2% (12th highest)
> Pct. of 65+ pop. in good health: 74.2% (17th lowest)
> Avg. retirement income: $23,744 (24th highest)

South Carolina has the eighth highest Alzheimer’s death rate in the United States, at 40.1 deaths for every 100,000 people. The Medicaid costs to care for South Carolinians diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, which reached $544 million in 2017, are projected to hit $793 million by 2025. The cost increase of 45.8% is among the highest of all states and well above the national average percentage increase of 37.1%.

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6. New Mexico
> Increase in Alzheimer’s, 2017-2025: 39.5%
> Pct. of 65+ pop. with Alzheimer’s: 11.5% (23rd highest)
> Population 65+: 15.9% (16th highest)
> Pct. of 65+ pop. in good health: 71.1% (10th lowest)
> Avg. retirement income: $26,637 (13th highest)

There are 38,000 elderly New Mexicans currently suffering from Alzheimer’s. By 2025, that number is expected to rise by nearly 40% to 53 thousand. The sharp rise will lead to higher medical costs. Medicaid spending on New Mexico residents 65 and over with Alzheimer’s or other dementias will rise by 52.4%, the fifth largest projected increase of all states.

Unlike many other states where Alzheimer’s disease cases will increase the most, the projected increase in New Mexico’s elderly population of 24.6% is slightly lower than the national average.