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Original Research |

Total and state-specific medical and absenteeism costs of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease among adults aged ≥18 years in the United States for 2010 and projections through 2020

Earl S. Ford, MD, MPH; Louise B. Murphy, PhD; Olga Khavjou, MA; Wayne H. Giles, MD, MS; James B. Holt, PhD; Janet B. Croft, PhD
Author and Funding Information

From the Division of Population Health, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA (Drs Ford, Murphy, Giles, Holt, and Croft) (eford@cdc.gov, lmurphy1@cdc.gov, hgiles@cdc.gov, jholt@cdc.gov, jbc0@cdc.gov) and RTI International, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina (Ms. Khavjou) (okhavjou@rti.org).

Correspondence to: Earl Ford, MD, MPH, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 4770 Buford Highway, MS K78, Atlanta, GA 30341; Email: eford@cdc.gov


Chest. 2014. doi:10.1378/chest.14-0972
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Abstract

Background/objective:  Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) remains a leading source of morbidity and mortality. Our objectives were to estimate 1) National US COPD-attributable annual medical (direct) costs by payer and absenteeism (indirect) in 2010 and projected medical costs through 2020 and 2) state-specific COPD-attributable medical and absenteeism costs in 2010.

Methods:  We used 2006-2010 Medical Expenditure Panel Survey, 2004 National Nursing Home Survey, and 2010 Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services data to generate cost estimates and 2010 census data to project medical costs through 2020.

Results:  In 2010, total national medical costs attributable to COPD and its sequelae were estimated at $32.1 billion and total absenteeism costs were $3.9 billion for a total burden of COPD-attributable costs of $36 billion. An estimated 16.4 million days of work were lost because of COPD. Of the medical costs, 18% was paid for by private insurance, 51% by Medicare, and 25% by Medicaid. National medical costs are projected to increase from $32.1 billion in 2010 to $49.0 billion in 2020. Total state-specific costs in 2010 ranged from $49.1 million in Wyoming to $2.8 billion in California: medical costs ranged from $42.5 million in Alaska to $2.5 billion in Florida and absenteeism costs ranged from $8.4 million in Wyoming to $434.0 million in California.

Conclusion:  Costs attributable to COPD and its sequelae are substantial and are projected to increase through 2020. Evidence-based interventions that prevent tobacco use and reduce clinical complications of COPD may result in potential decreased COPD-attributable costs.


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