Did you know that the average cost of care for dementia patients in the community in the US ranges from $3,600-$8,000+ per month? In other countries, like Switzerland for example, the cost can be even higher at up to $10,000 per month. However, some countries like Thailand and the Netherlands have begun introducing an outside-the-box form of dementia care, at the lower end of the price range. In Thailand cost of care is about $3,000 per month and appears to be more comprehensive than ever before. The documentary, “Dementia—The Unspooling Mind” features these new models for dementia care that Thailand and the Netherlands are pioneering. Dr. Joseph Mercola recently shared information about the documentary and dementia in general on his website: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2015/05/23/dementia-care.aspx?x_cid=20150523_lead_dementia-care_facebookdoc.
The documentary can also be accessed by clicking the link.
The “Dementia Resorts” in Thailand and the “Dementia Village” in the Netherlands are featured in the documentary. Thailand is home to two care centers, one in Chiang Mai and the other about 30 minutes outside of Chang Mai. At the first facility, patients receive around the clock care and attention, limiting the need for drugs and other harsh measures to manage behavior. The second facility is resort-style and patients experience sightseeing and spa days as part of their treatment. In the Netherlands, at a treatment center nicknamed the “Dementia Village,” the goal is to bring familiarity and comfort to patients. Based on their interests and backgrounds, residents are placed in “lifestyle groups” and the design of the home is decorated and designed to support each specific type of lifestyle.
Why is this important? With the number of people diagnosed with dementia expected to increase dramatically over the years, innovative and cost efficient care is a must. Some may even consider sending their loved ones to places like Thailand to ensure they are receiving comprehensive care that they can afford. Unfortunately, the wait-lists appear to be long and the decision is not an easy one. This issue points to the fact that, as Dr. Mercola states, “Continued efforts should be made at improving the quality of life and quality of care for people living with dementia, and this requires this type of “outside the box” thinking.”