Diabetes cost in US totaled $218b in '07
TRENTON, N.J. - As diabetes rapidly becomes one of the world's most common diseases, its financial cost is mounting, too, to well over $200 billion a year in the United States alone, says a study released yesterday.
The study puts the total at $218 billion last year - the first comprehensive estimate of the financial toll diabetes takes, according to Danish drug maker Novo Nordisk A/S, which paid for the study.
That figure includes direct medical care costs, from insulin and pills for controlling blood sugar to amputations and hospitalizations, plus indirect costs such as lost productivity, disability, and early retirement.
The $218 billion amounts to about 10 percent of all US healthcare spending by government and the public, about $2.1 trillion in 2006, and nearly half the $448.5 billion cost of heart disease and stroke.
The study, conducted by Lewin Group consultants, estimates costs for people known to have Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes at $174.4 billion combined, a total previously reported by Novo Nordisk, the world's top producer of insulin and the maker of diabetes pills NovoNorm and Prandin. That study was done with the American Diabetes Association.
Already, the federal government spends more than $85 billion a year - about one in eight healthcare dollars - on diabetes.