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Diabetes: By the Numbers

This article accompanies Fighting the 'Stealth Scourge'

Saturday, October 16, 2010
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The average direct medical cost to care for an employee with diabetes is approximately $13,000 a year -- more than five times the cost for a non-diabetic, according to Lincolnshire, Ill.-based Hewitt Associates.

Here are some other numbers associated with diabetes:

$18 million to $22 million

* What a typical employer with 9,500 employees and 500 pre-65 retirees spends on direct medical care for diabetics.

$174 billion

*  The estimated total cost of diabetes in the United States ($116 billion in direct medical costs and $58 billion in indirect costs).

23.6 million

* Number of people with diabetes.

5.7 million

*  Number of people with diabetes who have not yet been diagnosed.

1.6 million

* Number of new diabetes cases diagnosed in 2007 among those 20 years of age or older.

15 percent

*  Percent of all African American adults who have diabetes.

10 percent

* Percent of Hispanic/Latino adults who have diabetes.

7.5 percent

*  Percent of Asian American adults who have diabetes.

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68 percent

* Percent of diabetics who die of heart disease or stroke.

75 percent

*  Percent of diabetes sufferers who have high blood pressure.

60 percent to 70 percent

* Percent of diabetes sufferers who have mild to severe nervous system damage.

50

*  Number of diabetics who develop blindness every 24 hours.

195

* Number of non-traumatic lower-limb amputations performed every 24 hours on diabetics.

Sources: Hewitt Associates; National Diabetes Education Program, a joint program of the National Institutes of Health; and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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