The number of people with diabetes in the U.S. is growing, as is the cost to sufferers and employers, according to an analysis of patients with type 1 and type 2 diabetes by Gallup-Sharecare Well-Being Index released Tuesday. That works out at around $8,450 per person in extra health-care costs. The most expensive medical costs of the disease are hospital inpatient care, prescription medications to treat diabetes, anti-diabetic agents and diabetes supplies and physician office visits.
• Diabetes cost $245.5 billion in health-care costs this year
• That‘s $20 billion more than rates remained at 2008 levels
• 11.5% of U.S. adults has diabetes, up from 10.6% in 2008.
Communities with lower rates of diabetes report better access to health care, higher rates of health insurance, more regular dental visits, and fewer residents who struggle to afford health care, the report added. “Communities with low diabetes prevalence are more likely to think about and evaluate their lives highly,” the researchers found. The rising rates of obesity don’t help: 28.2% of Americans are obese, down from 28.4% in 2016, the report found.
Health care isn’t the only way diabetes is costly for Americans. The disease costs employers about $20 billion annually due to the lower productivity among employees with diabetes and unplanned absenteeism. People with diabetes are also more likely to suffer from other chronic conditions, such as heart disease, obesity and physical pain or diagnosed depression. If gone untreated, that can negatively affect their concentration and ability to work.
• Over 57 million unplanned days are missed each year by workers who have diabetes.
• 9% of part-time and 6% of full-time workers have diabetes, costing employers $20.4 billion.
• Full-time workers miss 5.5 days more days per year versus 4.3 days for part-time workers.
What’s worse, the rate of diabetes is expected to continue its rise, a separate 2012 American Diabetes Association, partially because of the increase in the prevalence of obesity. The number of obese men around the world increased to 281 million last year, compared with 31 million in 1975, while the number of obese women rose to 390 million compared with 69 million, according to research published in the peer-reviewed medical journal The Lancet.ThismuchdiabetescostsU.S.