True Cost of Diabetes and Prevention
Epidemiological study cohorts have shown a gradual increase in the worldwide incidence of type 2 diabetes mellitus. Based on the National Diabetes Statistics Report, 2014, 29 million people in the U.S. have diabetes aged 20 years or older (12.3% of the adult population), and 1 in 4 do not know it. This number has increased from 26 million in 2010. In 2012 alone, 1.7 million people aged 20 years or older were newly diagnosed with diabetes. Eighty-six million people aged 20 years and older have pre-diabetes, and if no precautions or actions are taken, 15-30% of people with pre-diabetes will develop type 2 diabetes within 5 years. Diabetes and its related complications account for $245 billion in total medical costs to include lost work and wages. This number is up from the reported $174 billion in 2010. In addition, over $500 billion of an estimated $3 trillion spent on healthcare last year was spent on conditions related to three chronic diseases: diabetes, heart disease and obesity. In the United States, the number of Emergency Department visits with diabetes as any-listed diagnosis increased from 9,464,000 in 2006 to 11,492,000 in 2009. Based on studies the average lifetime cost of caring for a type 2 diabetic patient is approximately $85,200 and can range from $55,000 to $130,000. Studies have shown that better control of diabetes can reduce cost, increase quality of life, and decrease mortality rate. One study showed that just by reducing A1c by 1% to 1.5%, type 2 diabetic patients can cut costs to $1,717 per target patient over 1 year. Prevention efforts nationwide are very crucial right now to combat serious health risks and increased medical cost. If we can prevent just that 30% with pre-diabetes from developing diabetes we can save $74 billion dollars in medical cost and lost productivity.