Thursday, June 16, 2005

Granny Get Your Gun

Looks like the Schiavo killing has provided a great solution to cutting the cost of the coming avalanche of Alzheimer's.

The Schiavo autopsy confirms that she'd lost about 50% of her brain - about what Grandma will expect when her Alzheimer's is fairly advanced.

Oddly enough:

Currently, 34 percent of Medicare spending goes to beneficiaries with Alzheimer's, even though those beneficiaries are only 12.8 percent of the population over age 65. Alzheimer's patients cost Medicare three times as much as other seniors, in fact, because Alzheimer's exacerbates care-provision demands for chronic conditions like diabetes or heart disease. The approaching baby-boomer retirement threatens to expand the numbers of Alzheimer's sufferers dramatically. When the association says that "the future of Medicare and Medicaid depends on getting Alzheimer's disease under control," it's not exaggerating.

Go figure.