U.S. Healthcare System Inefficiency Promotes Greater Costs and Higher Spending
The United States has always been a leader when it comes to dedicating funds toward treating and researching diseases, having led the way on things like cancer treatment research and looking into a cure for AIDS over the past thirty years. It dedicates much the same amount of researches and scientific development to the treatment of Alzheimer's Disease, especially because the country's Baby Boomer population is aging and the ranks of its senior citizens with the disease are swelling to record levels never before seen in that country. While United States research arms dedicate collectively more than $80 billion per year to research, the cost to the country's healthcare system is far greater indeed.
In 2010 alone, the United States healthcare system spent well more than $120 billion on Alzheimer's Disease treatments and patient care, a great deal more than was spent in the United Kingdom. This is not merely because the country's population is greater or because there are more incidences of the disease in the United States than there are across the pond. In fact, the per-capita spending on treatments and patient care relating to Alzheimer's Disease in the United States is more than twice that spent in the United Kingdom. The answers here are pretty obvious.
Despite all of its dedication to science and research as it pertains to this unfortunate disease, America does maintain one of the most costly, and least efficient, healthcare systems in the world. It's uncharacteristic for a country of this size and wealth to have such a system, but it's the reality that many Alzheimer's Disease patients suffer through for the entirety of their diagnosis. Treatment provided in the United States is virtually the same as that provided in the UK, but it simply costs more per capita.
United Kingdom Efficiency Promotes Lower Costs, Same Outlooks
The United Kingdom in 2009 spent just under $43 billion in U.S. dollars to deliver the same treatments and forms of patient care to its own citizens suffering from Alzheimer's Disease. That adds up to a far less per-capita cost for treatment, and actually stands as a testament to the country's healthcare system. Despite receiving criticism in some circles for its inefficiency, the truth is that the National Health Service has ably and capably helped mitigate the effects of Alzheimer's Disease in patients throughout the country using the National Health Service.
The country's health service does predict that the costs associated with Alzheimer's Disease treatment and management will rise over the next decade or so, especially as the Baby Boomer population in that country experiences the same hurdles associated with age that the American population will be experiencing concurrently. However, the estimated projection of increased costs in the UK is smaller per capita than it is in the United States, again promoting the efficiency of the country's centralized and unified National Health Service (relatively speaking) as compared to the much larger and decentralized system of treatment in the United States.
Overall, Two Very Attentive and Capable Countries for Alzheimer's Disease Treatment
Cost to treat Alzheimer's Disease in both countries should be considered a sidebar to the real innovations going on in the scientific community. While Alzheimer's Disease cannot be stopped or cured, it can be treated and the effects of the disease can be slowed down and mitigated to some extent, for a certain period of time. To that end, the spending on both sides of the Atlantic is well-intentioned, necessary, and furthering the overall goal of helping the increasing number of Alzheimer's Disease sufferers.