New Study Shows Heavy Cost of Diabetes on U.S. Healthcare

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Adult and juvenile diabetes treatment cost Americans more than $245 billion last year, according to a study by the American Diabetes Association (ADA). The sum represents a marked increase over diabetes spending since 2007, eclipsing by more than 40 percent total costs from six years ago.

An estimated 26 million people in the United States have diabetes, and a further 79 million more display pre-diabetes symptoms. In California alone, total diabetes costs have risen to more than $27 billion annually, according to the report.

About a quarter million people in the United States under the age of 20 are diabetic, the ADA reports, with one out every 400 children and adolescents in the country suffering from diabetes.

“As the number of people with diabetes grows, so does the economic burden it places on this country,” Dr. Robert Ratner, ADA chief scientific and medical officer, said in an official ADA press release.

“The cost of diabetes is rising at a rate higher than overall medical costs, with more than one-in-10 health care dollars in the country being spent directly on diabetes and its complications,” he continued. “And more than one-in-five health care dollars in the U.S. going to the care of people with diagnosed diabetes.”

The full ADA report, titled “Economic Costs of Diabetes in the U.S. in 2012,”  will be published in the April issue of the journal Diabetes Care.