Latest Alzheimer’s data shows 21% growth by 2025

The latest estimates from the Alzheimer’s Association shows the progressive brain disease is expected to afflict 120,000 Minnesotans by 2025.  

"Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of dementia, and it affects 6.5 million Americans 65 and older," Lisa Groon of the Alzheimer’s Association told FOX 9. "They are living with dementia today, and 99,000 of them are in Minnesota."

The latest facts and figures reported by the Alzheimer’s Association show a severe shortage of the number of geriatricians needed to help care for the growing number of Alzheimer’s patients.

There are currently 84 geriatricians in Minnesota – doctors who specialize in the care of the elderly. By 2050, Alzheimer’s Associations estimate the state will need at many as 185. The Association also says the number of home health and personal care aides will need to grow by nearly 30 percent to 101,110.

"There’s a shortage in both of those areas, and they’re critical in the areas of diagnosis, early detection, as well as the quality of care in long term care facilities," Groon said.

Groon gave FOX 9’s Tim Blotz an extended interview on the latest findings, including the insight that the vast majority of Americans are unfamiliar with the diagnosis of mild cognitive impairment, or MCI.  Groon explains what and MCI is, and the importance of early detection.

You can view the extended interview below.