The Economic Impact of Childhood Food Allergies
(Ivanhoe Newswire) –The overall cost of childhood food allergies was estimated at almost $25 billion annually in a study of caregivers that quantified medical, lost work productivity, out-of-pocket, and other expenses.
Food allergy affects about eight percent of children in the United States. Ruchi Gupta, MD, MPH, of the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago and the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, and colleagues observed 1,643 caregivers of a child with a food allergy. Their results showed that overall food allergy costs were $24.8 billion or about $4,000 per child.
Caregivers estimated that hospitalizations accounted for the largest proportion of medical costs ($1.9 billion), followed by outpatient visits ($819 million), emergency department visits ($764 million), and pediatrician visits ($543 million). Special diets and allergen-free foods were estimated to cost $1.7 billion annually.
For more information, go to: http://media.jamanetwork.com/news-item/study-estimates-economic-impact-childhood-food-allergies/
SOURCE: JAMA Pediatrics, September 2013
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