WASHINGTON Nearly 1-in-5 hospitalizations in 2008 were related to diabetes, according to a recent report by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.
That means a total of more than 7.7 million hospital stays and $83 million in hospital costs, of which Medicare covered 60%, the report found. On average, diabetes patients paid $10,937 for hospitalization, while those without the disease paid $8,746.
It’s no secret that diabetes is a major health epidemic in the country, with around 24 million people in the United States having some form of the disease, but the AHRQ report also showed the disparities in care that people receive based on income and geography. For example, when figures were broken down by ZIP code, the rates of hospitalization went up as the average income in an area went down. The South had the highest rate of hospital stays, 2,829 per 100,000 residents, while the West had the lowest, 1,866 per 100,000.