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The Economic Impact of Childhood Food Allergy in the United States

The Economic Impact of Childhood Food Allergy in the United States ImportanceDescribing the economic impact of childhood food allergy in the United States is important to guide public health policies. ObjectiveTo determine the economic impact of childhood food allergy in the United States and caregivers’ willingness to pay for food allergy treatment. Design, Setting, and ParticipantsA cross-sectional survey was conducted from November 28, 2011, through January 26, 2012. A representative sample of 1643 US caregivers of a child with a current food allergy were recruited for participation. Main Outcomes and MeasuresCaregivers of children with food allergies were asked to quantify the direct medical, out-of-pocket, lost labor productivity, and related opportunity costs. As an alternative valuation approach, caregivers were asked their willingness to pay for an effective food allergy treatment. ResultsThe overall economic cost of food allergy was estimated at $24.8 (95% CI, $20.6-$29.4) billion annually ($4184 per year per child). Direct medical costs were $4.3 (95% CI, $2.8-$6.3) billion annually, including clinician visits, emergency department visits, and hospitalizations. Costs borne by the family totaled $20.5 billion annually, including lost labor productivity, out-of-pocket, and opportunity costs. Lost labor productivity costs totaled $0.77 (95% CI, $0.53-$1.0) billion annually, accounting for caregiver time off work for medical visits. Out-of-pocket costs were $5.5 (95% CI, $4.7-$6.4) billion annually, with 31% stemming from the cost of special foods. Opportunity costs totaled $14.2 (95% CI, $10.5-$18.4) billion annually, relating to a caregiver needing to leave or change jobs. Caregivers reported a willingness to pay of $20.8 billion annually ($3504 per year per child) for food allergy treatment. Conclusions and RelevanceChildhood food allergy results in significant direct medical costs for the US health care system and even larger costs for families with a food-allergic child. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png JAMA Pediatrics American Medical Association

The Economic Impact of Childhood Food Allergy in the United States

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Publisher
American Medical Association
Copyright
Copyright 2013 American Medical Association. All Rights Reserved. Applicable FARS/DFARS Restrictions Apply to Government Use.
ISSN
2168-6203
eISSN
2168-6211
DOI
10.1001/jamapediatrics.2013.2376
pmid
24042236
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

ImportanceDescribing the economic impact of childhood food allergy in the United States is important to guide public health policies. ObjectiveTo determine the economic impact of childhood food allergy in the United States and caregivers’ willingness to pay for food allergy treatment. Design, Setting, and ParticipantsA cross-sectional survey was conducted from November 28, 2011, through January 26, 2012. A representative sample of 1643 US caregivers of a child with a current food allergy were recruited for participation. Main Outcomes and MeasuresCaregivers of children with food allergies were asked to quantify the direct medical, out-of-pocket, lost labor productivity, and related opportunity costs. As an alternative valuation approach, caregivers were asked their willingness to pay for an effective food allergy treatment. ResultsThe overall economic cost of food allergy was estimated at $24.8 (95% CI, $20.6-$29.4) billion annually ($4184 per year per child). Direct medical costs were $4.3 (95% CI, $2.8-$6.3) billion annually, including clinician visits, emergency department visits, and hospitalizations. Costs borne by the family totaled $20.5 billion annually, including lost labor productivity, out-of-pocket, and opportunity costs. Lost labor productivity costs totaled $0.77 (95% CI, $0.53-$1.0) billion annually, accounting for caregiver time off work for medical visits. Out-of-pocket costs were $5.5 (95% CI, $4.7-$6.4) billion annually, with 31% stemming from the cost of special foods. Opportunity costs totaled $14.2 (95% CI, $10.5-$18.4) billion annually, relating to a caregiver needing to leave or change jobs. Caregivers reported a willingness to pay of $20.8 billion annually ($3504 per year per child) for food allergy treatment. Conclusions and RelevanceChildhood food allergy results in significant direct medical costs for the US health care system and even larger costs for families with a food-allergic child.

Journal

JAMA PediatricsAmerican Medical Association

Published: Nov 1, 2013

References