New Alzheimer’s Disease Support Model Could Save Millions

Around the country, states are considering different strategies to control the costs of caring for Alzheimer’s patients; a New York model which could lead to significant savings and improved services is drawing the most interest. The New York University Caregiver Intervention (NYUCI) program “offers caregivers six sessions of individual and family counseling within four months of enrollment and the opportunity to participate in a weekly support group,” with telephone counseling when needed. In Minnesota, researchers mimicked the effort with a five-year pilot program and found that the program could save $966 million by 2025, if it were implemented throughout the state. Cost savings were the direct result of keeping Alzheimer’s patients in the community and at home. The findings also suggest that broader access to caregiver supports could produce a positive return on investment with widespread implementation, reasonable program costs and substantial caregiver participation.

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