Cognitive Impairment | Peer Reviewed Journals

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Cognitive Impairment

Cognitive impairment is when a person has trouble remembering, learning new things, concentrating, or making decisions that affect their everyday life. Cognitive impairment ranges from mild to severe. With mild impairment, people may begin to notice changes in cognitive functions, but still be able to do their everyday activities. Severe levels of impairment can lead to losing the ability to understand the meaning or importance of something and the ability to talk or write, resulting in the inability to live independently. Cognitive impairment is costly. People with cognitive impairment report more than three times as many hospital stays as individuals who are hospitalized for some other condition.3 Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias alone are estimated to be the third most expensive disease to treat in the United States. The average Medicaid nursing facility expenditure per state in 2010 for individuals with Alzheimer’s disease is estimated at $647 million,4 not including home- and community-based care or prescription drug costs.

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