A common question among policymakers, public health experts, and consumers is whether health care treatment costs can be avoided if more preventive measures are adopted.
A significant amount of scientific research has been conducted examining dietary supplements, and many studies demonstrate that these supplements have a positive effect on reducing the risk of a disease event.
Use of specific dietary supplements in targeted populations not only provides health benefits, but according to new economic report, also offers significant savings in health care costs. The report, “Smart Prevention-Health Care Cost Savings Resulting From The Targeted Use of Dietary Supplements,” issued by the economic firm Frost & Sullivan, through a grant from the Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN) Foundation.
It demonstrated that supplementation at preventive intake levels in high-risk populations can reduced the number of disease-associated medical events, representing the potential for hundreds of millions of dollars – and in some cases billions – of savings.
“Chronic disease takes a huge toll on people’s quality of life, and the health care system spends a tremendous amount of money treating chronic disease, but has failed to focus on ways to reduce those costs through prevention,” said Steve Mister, president, CRN Foundation.
In the U.S., 75 percent of health care dollars go to the treatment of chronic disease, with only 3 percent spent on prevention, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
“As an economist in the face of escalating health care costs,” said Chris Shanahan, global program manager, Frost & Sullivan, “it’s rewarding to reveal good news for health care practitioners, public policy officials, insurance companies and patients that select supplement interventions can reduce the chances of experiencing a costly medical event and help control rising health care costs.”
Mr. Shanahan called the findings of this new report “a game changer” with implications for anyone concerned about rising health care costs. “I anticipate this report will fuel the critical conversation around the importance of preventive health care practices to control health care spending, and the critical role dietary/nutritional supplements can play in reducing the risk of medical events associated with these diseases.”
“Chronic diseases negatively impact our lives far beyond the direct medical costs and if there are things we can do to help lessen medical events and associated costs of those diseases, we should be doing them” said Mr. Mister.
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