American Diabetes Association Publishes Lewin Group Report: “Economic Costs of Diabetes in the U.S. in 2017”

Date Posted : April 1, 2018


The American Diabetes Association recently released a study, prepared by the Lewin Group, on the economic costs of diabetes. This study updates previous estimates of the economic burden of diagnosed diabetes. It also quantifies the increased use of health resources and lost productivity associated with diabetes in 2017.

”The ‘Economic Costs of Diabetes’ study is a cornerstone of ADA’s mission,” says Matt Peterson, vice president of Medical Information and Professional Engagement at the ADA. “It’s critical to supporting our advocacy efforts for increased support for diabetes research, and it provides firm, evidenced-based data that guides our own research funding priorities and our public and professional education agendas.  It is continually the most-read article in the premier clinical diabetes research journal Diabetes Care. We are extremely pleased with the long-term commitment that our partner the Lewin Group has made to working with us on this report.”

According to the report, diagnosed diabetes cost the U.S. economy an estimated $327 billion in 2017. This represents $237 billion in direct medical costs and $90 billion in reduced productivity. Other findings include:

  • Care for people with diagnosed diabetes accounts for 1 in 4 health care dollars in the U.S., and more than half of that expenditure is directly attributable to diabetes.
  • People with diagnosed diabetes incur average medical expenditures of about $16,750 per year. Of that, about $9,600 is attributed to diabetes. 
  • People with diagnosed diabetes, on average, have medical expenditures approximately 2.3 times higher than what expenditures would be in the absence of diabetes.
  • The largest shares of the indirect costs of diabetes are represented by:
    • Reduced labor force participation due to disability
    • Reduced performance at work
    • Early mortality

Adjusting for inflation, the economic costs of diabetes increased by 26 percent from 2012 to 2017. This is due to the increased prevalence of diabetes and the increased cost per person with diabetes.

Read the full study from the American Diabetes Association in Diabetes Care: