Red Lake Nation News - Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

Chronic diseases cost Minnesotans big


ST. PAUL — Health care for Minnesotans with chronic diseases such as diabetes, cancer, kidney failure and heart disease costs eight times more than for people without them.

"This report shows the significant financial toll chronic disease is taking on individuals, our communities and our state," Minnesota Health Commissioner Dr. Ed Ehlinger said Tuesday after release of a first-of-its-kind report. "We cannot afford to treat our way out of this crisis. We must more strongly focus on preventing chronic disease or delaying its progression by investing in healthier communities, public health and primary care."

The average health-care cost for a Minnesotan at with least one chronic disease was $12,800 a year in the just-released study of 2012 costs, for a statewide total of nearly $23 billion. Those without a chronic disease, and their insurers, spent $1,600 a year on average.


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