BOSTON, Oct. 15 (UPI) — More than 50 percent of Americans say they know a relative or friend afflicted with Alzheimer’s disease, a U.S. survey indicates.
A national poll of 3,400 ethnically diverse adults, 502 of whom were caregivers, conducted by the public opinion research firm Abt SRBI says most caregivers say they are stressed at the highest level and the pressures of caregiving have had an adverse impact on their finances, social relationships and work obligations. Men said the stress strained their marriage, while women said it meant less time with their partner or spouse.
“What is surprising in this survey, is that despite the personal knowledge of Alzheimer’s by 55 percent of Americans, only 27 percent of Americans are making financial or caregiver plans for the possibility it will affect them,” Dr. Kelly Daley, senior analyst for Abt SRBI, says in a statement.
The poll — conducted in conjunction with the Alzheimer’s Association and released as part of California’s First Lady Maria Shriver’s study, “The Shriver Report: A Woman’s Nation Takes on Alzheimer’s” — says nearly half of all caregivers to Alzheimer’s patients feel they had no choice in assuming this responsibility.
The poll indicates 78 percent of Americans say the government should invest in research to prevent or cure Alzheimer’s, while 54 percent say it is the government’s responsibility to financially help families care for Alzheimer’s patients.
Copyright 2010 United Press International, Inc. (UPI). Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI’s prior written consent.