Monday, November 8, 2010

Diabetes, by the Numbers.

In October, the CDC released a statement estimating that by the year 2050 between 1 in 3 and 1 in 5 Americans will have diabetes! That is an insane thought! Let’s learn more about the diabetes disease burden in the U.S. by looking at some more numbers.

23.6 Million people in the US have diabetes

  • 17.9 million of these people are diagnosed
  • 5.7 million of these people are undiagnosed (Can you believe that? 5.7 MILLION people have diabetes and don’t even know it!)
  • 57 million people have pre-diabetes.

About 40 children per day in the U.S. are diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes.

Diabetes is the 7th leading cause of death in the United States, although it is thought that diabetes is vastly under reported as a cause of death. For example, if someone died from heart disease brought on by diabetes, the death certificate might just say “heart disease,” so we don’t have an accurate picture of just how diabetes is contributing to the overall mortality rate in the U.S.

$174 BILLION dollars*= The estimated cost of diagnosed diabetes in the U.S. for one year (including direct medical costs, and indirect medical costs like disability, loss of work, or death).

$218 BILLION*=The estimated TOTAL cost of diabetes a year (including undiagnosed, diagnosed, gestational & prediabetes)

  • To put that in perspective, that is greater than the GDP** of more than 80% of countries in the world!
  • That is also 1.5% of the GDP** of the US! That is a whole lotta money being lost!

To put that in even GREATER perspective, since the founding of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation in 1970, they have only raised $1.4 billion dollars in money for research. So, in a whole 40 YEARS, JDRF hasn’t made enough to cover 1% of 1 years’ expenditures on diabetes.

By the look of these numbers, it's obvious that diabetes is a serious problem, and will get even more serious if we don't do something about it now. Simply put, we just can't afford to keep ignoring diabetes, because it's chipping away at our national GDP, and because by 2050, it will affect almost every American family.

If you want to read more about diabetes statistics, here are some great links:

NEXT UP: My Personal Diagnosis Story! Find out what envelopes, turkey sandwiches, and the Grand Ole' Duke of York have to do with my diabetes diagnosis!

* For the year 2007 (most recent available statistics)

**We got our GDP estimates from the World Bank, here.

Also, special thanks to my personal statistician, my husband Ben, for helping me make sense of the big numbers!

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