$52 billion per year is spent on PD-related expenses, according to results of the Economic Burden of Parkinson’s Disease Study

$52 billion per year is spent on PD-related expenses, according to results of the Economic Burden of Parkinson’s Disease Study

In October 2018, APDA asked our constituents to consider participating in a new study called The Economic Burden of Parkinson’s Disease (PD), with the goal of estimating the economic burden of PD in the United States. An online survey collected information from patients and care partners concerning both the direct medical costs of PD, such as co-payments for medications, doctor visits and hospitalizations, as well as the indirect costs such as lost wages, forced early retirement and family caregiver time.

In addition to the patient-driven portion of the data collection, the study collected data from other sources including Medicare, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Census Bureau, in order to obtain a complete picture of the economic burden on patients, care partners, healthcare systems and the government.

The results of this comprehensive study were revealed today, June 13, 2019. The total cost of PD is $52 billion every year, with $25.4 billion attributable to direct medical costs, and $26.5 billion attributable to indirect medical costs. Of that total cost, $25 billion is shouldered by the federal government through Social Security and Medicare programs. These numbers are double previous estimates.

Having this current, accurate and all-inclusive data will be very valuable in helping the PD community advocate for much-needed increased research spending. It will help foster more informative and convincing conversations with policymakers, now that we can more accurately express (through the study results) the urgency of the situation and the impact of the disease. In economic terms, funding to discover new treatments for PD that will reduce the medical burden of PD, will subsequently reduce the economic burden as well, and in that way, could potentially pay for itself.

While the results of the Economic Burden of Parkinson’s Disease study are alarming, having this accurate data will help get the attention of the policymakers who can make a difference by dedicating increased funds for PD research,” states Leslie A. Chambers, President & CEO, American Parkinson Disease Association.  “APDA is proud to have been a partner in this important project, and we’re thankful to our constituents who candidly shared the financial challenges that PD brings to their lives.”

The study was conducted under the auspices of the Michael J. Fox Foundation (MJFF), in collaboration with the American Parkinson Disease Association, Parkinson’s Foundation, and Parkinson Alliance, as well as ACADIA, Adamas, AbbVie, Acorda and Biogen.