Posted on Mar 21, 2012, 6 a.m.
As the global population ages, costs related to vision loss are expected to skyrocket, potentially to stand at $3.53 billion by 2020.
Costs related to vision loss are expected to skyrocket in the next 10 years as the global population ages. Robert Braunstein, from Columbia University (New York, USA), and colleagues reported that in 2010, visual impairment was responsible for $2.95 trillion in direct and indirect healthcare costs, with North America accounting for $692 billion and Western Europe accounting for $576 billion. Projecting that the overall tally will balloon as a result of ocular disease is related to the rising diabetes epidemic, to potentially stand at $3.53 billion by 2020. Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is expected to become a major health issue worldwide, and study authors urge for: “whatever is required to elevate vision care to the status of a major healthcare issue. Implicit in this action are urgent requests to healthcare agencies for increased funding for vision research and to establish programs to raise awareness among patients, so that they can recognize the signs of vision loss early and seek timely — and thereby vision- and cost-saving — treatment.”
Braunstein R. “ AMD: Its Potential Health and Economic Impact around the World” [Abstract ISRETSA232]. World Ophthalmology Congress 2012, presented 18 February 2012.