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Year : 2013  |  Volume : 57  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 71-77

Cost of dementia care in India: Delusion or reality?

1 Additional Professor, Department of Epidemiology, National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, Bangalore, India
2 Professor, Department of Psychiatry, National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, Bangalore, India

Correspondence Address:
Girish N Rao
Additional Professor of Epidemiology, National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, Bangalore - 560 029
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0019-557X.114986

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Context: In 2010, nearly 37 lakh Indians have been estimated to be suffering from dementia. Estimated costs of care in published literature do not reflect the actual expenses of individual households. Hence, a household budget approach was undertaken to arrive at the costs of dementia care in India. Materials and Methods: We identified and listed the different components of care, classified the applicability of care for the different components with respect to mild, moderate, and severe cases. This framework was utilized to assign costs of care and arrive at the household costs of care for a Person with Dementia (PwD) in both urban and rural areas. Results: The total expense was similar to that reported by individual households. The annual household cost of caring for a person with dementia in India, depending on the severity of the disease, ranged between INR 45,600 to INR 2,02,450 in urban areas and INR 20,300 to INR 66,025 in rural areas. Costs increased with increasing severity of the disease process. The costs of informal care contributed to nearly half of the total costs either in rural or urban area. With increasing severity, proportion of medical costs decreased while social cost increased. Medical costs in rural areas were nearly one-third of the total costs as against less than one-fifth in urban areas. Conclusion: The household budget model realistically estimated the household costs of care. It is hoped that the comprehensive and generic framework would prompt health professionals, researchers, and policy makers in India to catalyze geriatric health services, particularly for care for PwD.

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