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One year on

The list: 5 things to know about Alzheimer’s

Hand of a younger person hold the hand of an older person
More than 16 million Americans care for people with Alzheimer’s or other dementias.

The Postal Service released its Alzheimer’s semipostal stamp almost one year ago. To mark the occasion, here are some facts about the disease, courtesy of the Alzheimer’s Association.

1. Millions are living with Alzheimer’s disease. More than 5.7 million Americans have Alzheimer’s. By 2050, this number is projected to rise to nearly 14 million.

2. Alzheimer’s is growing. From 2000-2015, deaths from heart disease decreased 11 percent while deaths from Alzheimer’s increased 123 percent. Every 65 seconds, someone in the United States develops the disease.

3. Alzheimer’s is deadly. Alzheimer’s disease is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States. One in 3 people 65 and older dies with Alzheimer’s or another dementia — this is more than breast cancer and prostate cancer combined.

4. Care is costly. More than 16 million Americans provide unpaid care for people with Alzheimer’s or other dementias. These caregivers provided an estimated 18.4 billion hours of care valued at more than $232 billion.

5. Costs are increasing. In 2018, Alzheimer’s and other dementias will cost the nation $277 billion. By 2050, these costs could rise as high as $1.1 trillion a year. Early and accurate diagnosis could save up to $7.9 trillion in medical and care costs.

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