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Annual Vision Disorder Costs are now $145 billion in the US, per new Prevent Blindness Study

On June 18 at the Third Annual Focus on Eye Health National Summit held at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., Prevent Blindness (PB) released a new report entitled The Future of Vision: Forecasting the Prevalence and Costs of Vision Problems.

This study estimates the current annual cost of vision disorders at $145 billion, which has increased by $6 billion from the $139 billion estimate in PB's 2013 study entitled Cost of Vision Problems: The Economic Burden of Vision Loss and Eye Disorders in the United States. The 2014 study projects that the total annual cost of vision disorders, which includes government, insurance and patient costs, will grow to $373.2 billion in 2050 when expressed in 2014 dollars-which is $717 billion when adjusted for inflation. Of the $373.2 billion estimated 2050 costs, $154 billion or 41 percent will be borne by the federal government as the Baby-Boom generation ages into the Medicare program.

Top-line findings include:

  • The annual cost of vision disorders is now $145 billion, a $6 billion increase from the estimate in PB's 2013 study.
  • By year 2050, vision disorder costs will reach $373.2 B ( in 2014 dollars), and the federal government's share of those costs will be $154 B or 41 %. The $373 B cost, when adjusted for inflation, is $717 B.
  • The aging of the population will drive much of the cost increases, with largest growth in the age 90-plus population.
  • The prevalence of glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy will increase dramatically due to aging and the disproportionate incidence in the African American and Hispanic segments of the population.

More Information about the study and the Eye Health National Summit

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Prevent Blindness

Founded in 1908, Prevent Blindness is a leading volunteer eye health and safety organization dedicated to fighting blindness and saving sight in the United States of America. Focused on promoting a continuum of vision care, Prevent Blindness touches the lives of millions of people each year.