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  • Scott Adams

    Celiac Disease Means Higher Costs for Healthcare Providers and Patients

    Scott Adams
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    Reviewed and edited by a celiac disease expert.

      An analysis of US healthcare claims shows that people with celiac disease have higher all-cause and celiac-related HRU costs, compared with matched non-celiac patients. Here are the details.


    Image: CC BY-SA 2.0--401(K) 2013
    Caption: Image: CC BY-SA 2.0--401(K) 2013

    Celiac.com 10/15/2020 - A team of researchers recently conducted an analysis of US healthcare resource utilization (HRU) and costs between celiac patients and a group of matched control subjects.

    The research team included Katherine Cappell, PhD; Aliki Taylor MPH, PhD; Barbara H. Johnson MBA; Steve Gelwicks, MS; Song Wang, Song PhD; Michele Gerber, MPH, MD; Danial A. Leffler, Daniel MD.



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    They are variously affiliated with the IBM Watson Health, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA; Takeda Pharmaceuticals International, London, United Kingdom; Takeda Pharmaceuticals International Co, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA; and the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

    For their study, the team used the MarketScam databases to isolate celiac patients with an endoscopic biopsy and two or more medical encounters with a celiac disease diagnosis between January 1, 2010, and October 1, 2015. 

    As an index date, the team used the date of the first health claim with a celiac diagnosis on or after the endoscopic biopsy. They matched celiac disease cases 1:1 to with non-celiac patients on demographic characteristics and Deyo-Charlson Comorbidity Index score. 

    The team compared clinical characteristics, all-cause, and celiac-related HRU, and price adjusted costs, between celiac patients and control subject during the one year before and two years after the index date, and matched 11,008 study subjects to 11,008 controls. Study subjects averaged about 40 years old, and just over 70% were women.

    The follow-up data showed that celiac patients had higher rates of all-cause and celiac-related HRU including inpatient admissions, emergency department visits, gastroenterologist visits, dietician visits, endoscopic biopsies, and gastroenterology imaging. 

    Incremental all-cause costs were nearly $8,000 first year, and $4,000 second year, while celiac-related costs were nearly $3,000 and more than $900 for the same periods.

    This analysis shows that people with celiac disease face higher all-cause and celiac-related HRU costs, compared with matched non-celiac patients, and helps to quantify the extra financial challenges faced by people with celiac disease.

    Have you or a loved one faced higher health care costs due to celiac disease? Please share your story below.

    Read more at the American Journal of Gastroenterology

    Edited by Scott Adams

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  • About Me

    Scott Adams was diagnosed with celiac disease in 1994, and, due to the nearly total lack of information available at that time, was forced to become an expert on the disease in order to recover. In 1995 he launched the site that later became Celiac.com to help as many people as possible with celiac disease get diagnosed so they can begin to live happy, healthy gluten-free lives.  He is co-author of the book Cereal Killers, and founder and publisher of the (formerly paper) newsletter Journal of Gluten Sensitivity. In 1998 he founded The Gluten-Free Mall which he sold in 2014. Celiac.com does not sell any products, and is 100% advertiser supported.


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