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Costs of Chronic Diseases at the State Level: The Chronic Disease Cost Calculator
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    Prev Chronic Dis
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    Many studies have estimated national chronic disease costs, but state-level estimates are limited. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention developed the Chronic Disease Cost Calculator (CDCC), which estimates state-level costs for arthritis, asthma, cancer, congestive heart failure, coronary heart disease, hypertension, stroke, other heart diseases, depression, and diabetes.


    Using publicly available and restricted secondary data from multiple national data sets from 2004 through 2008, disease-attributable annual per-person medical and absenteeism costs were estimated. Total state medical and absenteeism costs were derived by multiplying per person costs from regressions by the number of people in the state treated for each disease. Medical costs were estimated for all payers and separately for Medicaid, Medicare, and private insurers. Projected medical costs for all payers (2010 through 2020) were calculated using medical costs and projected state population counts.


    Median state-specific medical costs ranged from $410 million (asthma) to $1.8 billion (diabetes); median absenteeism costs ranged from $5 million (congestive heart failure) to $217 million (arthritis).


    CDCC provides methodologically rigorous chronic disease cost estimates. These estimates highlight possible areas of cost savings achievable through targeted prevention efforts or research into new interventions and treatments.

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