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 Devastating Toll of Diabetes Reaches $174 Billion 
by Healthy News - 2/13/2008
Study reveals costs have climbed 32% since 2002

ALEXANDRIA, VA (January 23, 2008) – Diabetes is costing Americans $174 billion annually, a figure that has increased by 32 percent since 2002, according to a study commissioned by the American Diabetes Association (ADA).

The ADA, leaders from the Congressional Diabetes Caucus, and diabetes experts discussed the economic impact of this compelling new data during a congressional briefing today on Capitol Hill.

The study reveals that the direct economic costs associated with diabetes have reached unprecedented levels. Medical expenditures of care for people with diabetes are estimated to be $116 billion, with a disproportionate percentage of the costs resulting from treatment and hospitalization of people with diabetes-related complications. The findings also suggest that 1 out of every 5 health care dollars is spent caring for someone with diagnosed diabetes.

According to Ann L. Albright, PhD, RD, President, Health Care & Education, ADA, “The findings re-affirm that diabetes is a public health crisis and its implications are painful and far reaching. This underscores the importance of early diagnosis and treatment. Diabetes becomes much more costly in financial and human terms when the disease is not properly treated.”

The study also assessed the economic impact of indirect costs, which were estimated to be $58 billion when accounting for reduced productivity of both those in the labor force and unpaid workers, unemployment from disease-related disability, and increased absenteeism. Last year alone, diabetes claimed more than 284,000 lives.

Considering that an additional 6 million more people are believed to have diabetes but have not yet been diagnosed, the study estimates that the actual cost of diabetes may greatly exceed $174 billion.

“Diabetes plagues more than just the individual with the disease. It is common, it is costly, it creates numerous complications, and there is no cure. Until we start reversing current trends, through increased awareness, prevention and aggressive disease management, diabetes will continue to have an adverse impact on our society as a whole.” said R. Stewart Perry, Chairman of the Board, ADA.

Albright and Perry were joined by Ed Gregg, PhD, Chief of the Epidemiology and Statistics Branch, Division of Diabetes Translation, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and Griffin Rodgers, M.D., M.A.C.P., Director, National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, National Institutes of Health. Representatives Diana DeGette (D-CO), Mike Castle (R-DE), Xavier Becerra (D-CA), Zach Space (D-OH), and Mark Kirk (R-IL), leaders from the Congressional Diabetes Caucus, are also expected to attend the briefing.

The annual estimated costs of diabetes are available for each state and congressional district, and can be accessed by visiting the ADA’s website: and using the cost calculator tool. Users will be prompted to enter the respective state and congressional district number to retrieve data for the area of interest.

The American Diabetes Association is the nation’s leading voluntary health organization supporting diabetes research, information and advocacy. The Association’s advocacy efforts include helping to combat discrimination against people with diabetes; advocating for the increase of federal diabetes research and programs; and improved access to, and quality of, healthcare for people with diabetes. The Association’s mission is to prevent and cure diabetes and to improve the lives of all people affected by diabetes. Founded in 1940, the Association provides service to hundreds of communities across the country.

For more information please call the American Diabetes Association at 800-DIABETES (800-342-2383) or visit Information from both these sources is available in English and Spanish.

Note to editor: The study referenced above was conducted by the Lewin Group and is entitled: “The Economic Costs of Diabetes in the U.S. in 2007.” The study is available on the ADA’s website at

Provided by Healthy News on 2/13/2008
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