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Report: Updating policies targeting diabetes could save billions in healthcare costs each year

November 01, 2018 / Paige Minemyer

Public health policies targeting diabetes could use a serious refresher as the disease rate skyrockets, according to a new white paper. The number of patients with Type 2 diabetes has reached nearly 10% of the adult U.S. population, with an additional 1.5 million people diagnosed between 2016 and 2017, according to the report from the Keckley Group. If 20% of the 30 million people with Type 2 diabetes reduced their HbA1c levels—a key indicator for the disease—by just 1%, it would save at least $10 billion each year in healthcare costs. Extrapolated to the 84 million people who are prediabetic, the savings could grow significantly, according to the report. Chronic diseases, of which Type 2 diabetes is a prime example, account for 84% of healthcare costs.