An estimated 62,000 individuals in Houston and Harris County live with Alzheimer’s disease, according to Care Partners.
Caring for someone with Alzheimer’s can range in cost from $15,000 to $100,000, depending on the level of care.
According to the Alzheimer’s Association, over the next 30 years, the country’s costs are expected to increase from $277 billion to more than $1.1 trillion.
The rising costs are a problem considering 25% of caregivers are still young. They’re called the “sandwich generation,” meaning they’re in between caring for their parents and their own children.
Katie Scott is President of Care Partners, a local organization that helps people with dementia and their families find support and financial assistance.
“If you are a caregiver of an older adult, you can come to any one of our education programs, you can come to a support group, to get more information on topics like this,” Scott explained.
She said their service is free because everything else related to the disease can be taxing.
“As soon as you get a diagnosis, for any type of dementia, start having conversations and start reaching out to financial planners. Reach out to the Harris County Area Agency on Aging. Reach out to other service providers that can guide you through ‘what are the next steps,’” Scott advised.
Wednesday, at the gathering place organized by Care Partners, people from all stages of the disease were dancing, singing, moving to activities the organization planned for the group. The patients get to enjoy the day while caregivers take a break to run errands.
Tommy Breaux is Vice President of Care Partners and said music therapy is incredible because the area of the brain affected by Alzheimer’s doesn’t necessarily affect that part of the brain that processes music.
“Even those in later stage, who often can’t even communicate,” Breaux said. “We know all of a sudden the words come flowing when they hear the music and it’s really magic.”
Care Partners is a nonprofit and they rely on donor funds. They were also cut in size due to the pandemic, but are looking to rebuild their groups. If you’re interested or in need of assistance, visit CarePartnersTexas.org