Appropriate primary care could have reduced costs for diabetes-related hospitalizations by $2.5 billion in 2001, or almost two-thirds, saving Medicare $1.3 billion and Medicaid $386 million that year, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality said. According to a new report, diabetes-related admissions -- often for preventable complications -- cost all payers $3.8 billion in 2001. The data showed a marked discrepancy in care. The average annual healthcare cost for diabetes patients with multiple hospitalizations in 2001 was nearly three times that of diabetes patients with one hospitalization ($23,100 vs. $8,500). Racial and ethnic minorities and low-income people were more likely than others to have multiple diabetes-related hospitalizations, the AHRQ report said. Read the report. -- by Ralph Loos
Diabetes-related hospital care largely avoidable: report
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