iLoveBenefits: Industry News Blog

Recent data about the US population from the CDC

  • POPULATION: The U.S. population grew from 216.0 million to 321.4 million between 1975 and 2015.
    • The number of Americans aged 65 and over increased from 22.6 million to 47.8 million during 1975–2015.
    • In 1980, 20.1% of the population identified as racial or ethnic minorities; by 2015, 38.4% of the population identified as racial or ethnic minorities.
    • During 1975–2015, children under 18 were more likely to live in poverty than adults aged 18-64, and adults 65 and over.
    • The rural (nonmetropolitan) share of the population declined between 1970 and 2015, while the suburban share of the population increased.
  • LIFE EXPECTANCY: Between 1975 and 2015, life expectancy increased by 6.2 years for the total population and increased for males and females.
  • INFANT MORTALITY: The infant mortality rate decreased 63%, from 16.07 to 5.90 deaths per 1,000 live births between 1975 and 2015.
  • CAUSES OF DEATH: Heart disease and cancer were the top two causes of death in the U.S. throughout the past 4 decades.
  • CIGARETTE SMOKING: Between 1974 and 2015, the age-adjusted prevalence of current cigarette smoking among persons aged 25 and over decreased from 36.9% to 15.6%. In 2015, men and women aged 25 and over with no high school diploma were more than four times as likely to smoke as those with a bachelor’s degree or higher.
  • OBESITY: The age-adjusted percentage of adults aged 20 and over with obesity increased steadily from 22.9% in 1988–1994 to 37.8% in 2013–2014.
  • PRESCRIPTION DRUGS: For all adult age groups, the percentage taking one or more prescription drug in the past month increased between 1988–1994 and 2013–2014. Among adults aged 65 and over, use of five or more prescription drugs in the past 30 days increased from 13.8% to 42.2% in same time period.
  • HEALTH INSURANCE: Between 1978 and September 2016 (preliminary data), the percentage of children under age 18 who were uninsured decreased from 12.0% to 5.0%; the percentage with Medicaid coverage increased from 11.3% to 39.2%; and the percentage with private coverage decreased from 75.1% to 53.5%.

Health, United States 2016” with “Chartbook on Long-term Trends in Health” is available on the NCHS web site at: http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/hus.htm.

90% of Strokes are Preventable

The Lancet recently published a study on the modifiable risk factors behind strokes. Here are some key findings from the report:

  • 10 controllable risk factors account for 90% of all strokes.
  • Eliminating high blood pressure was estimated to reduce risk by 48%.
  • High blood pressure causes 39% of strokes in North America, Australia and western Europe.
  • 60% of strokes in Southeast Asia are caused by high blood pressure.
  • Eliminating physical inactivity was estimated to reduce stroke risk by 36%.
  • Stroke risk is reduced by an estimated 23% when a poor diet is improved.

Source: The Lancet, July 15, 2016

Diabetes Spending Reached $16,021 Per Capita in 2014

The Health Cost Institute recently released a study on healthcare spending for diabetes patients. Here are some key findings from the report:

  • Spending on people with diabetes reached $16,021 per capita in 2014, an $897 increase from 2013.
  • Health care spending for people with diabetes rose 6% compared to 3.2% for people without diabetes.
  • The number of ER visits among people with diabetes rose 8.1% annually from 2012-2014.
  • People with diabetes had 7x more filled days of cardiovascular drugs than those without diabetes.
  • Young adults (19-25) with diabetes had 4x more hospital admissions for mental health and substance use.
  • In 2014, insureds with diabetes spent $1,944 out of pocket compared to $752 for those without diabetes.

Source: Health Cost Institute, June 20, 2016

2.7% of US Adults Achieve All Four Healthy Behaviors

Researchers from Oregon State University and the University of Mississippi recently conducted a study on four healthy lifestyle behaviors (good diet, moderate exercise, recommended body fat percentage, non-smoking) in U.S. adults. Here are some key findings from the report:

  • 2.7% of all adults had all four healthy lifestyle characteristics, while 16% had three.
  • 37% had two, 34% had one, and 11% had none of the healthy lifestyle characteristics.
  • Mexican American adults were more likely to eat a healthy diet than non-Hispanic white or black adults.
  • Women were more likely to not smoke and eat a healthy diet, but less likely to be sufficiently active.
  • 1 in 10 had a normal body fat percentage and 46% were sufficiently active.
  • 71% adults did not smoke and 38% ate a healthy diet.

Source: Oregon State University, March 21, 2016

AHRQ Stats: Statin Use

 

The number of adults who reported using prescribed statins more than doubled in 10 years, from 17.6 million in 2000–2001 to 40.8 million in 2010–2011. (Source: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Medical Expenditure Panel Survey Statistical Brief #458: Trends in Statin Therapy among Adults (Age ≥ 18), United States, 2000 to 2011.)

Mortality from Hypertension has risen 23%

cnCDC: Hypertension mortality climbing
A CDC report found that overall mortality from hypertension has risen 23% since 2000. Meanwhile, mortality from all other causes is down 21%. Deaths linked to hypertension among 45- to 64-year-old men increased by about 58% and nearly 37% for women in the same age group from 2000 to 2013. Ethnic and racial disparities persist but are smaller. “There is a critical need to facilitate and incentivize improvement in blood pressure control and heart health, as well provide optimal patient care,” Dr. Gregg Fonarow said. HealthDay News

Diabetes awareness

The CDC and doctors team up for a diabetes initiative. With 90 percent of people who have pre-diabetes unaware that they even have the condition, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the American Medical Association are calling on doctors to ramp up screening efforts and raise awareness about the risk factors for developing a full onset of the disease.

BEA: Breakdown of Healthcare Spending By Disease Type

The Bureau of Economic Analysis analyzed healthcare spending by disease from 2000 to 2010. Here’s the percentage of total spending for each disease category:

Disease Type Percentage Spent
Circulatory conditions 13.6%
Prevention, colds, basic care 12.0%
Musculoskeletal 9.9%
Respiratory 8.4%
Endocrine 7.3%
Nervous 7.0%
Cancers 6.7%
Genitourinary 6.4%
Injury 6.4%
Digestive 5.9%
Mental Health 4.6%
Infectious Disease 3.4%
Skin conditions 2.2%
Pregnancy/birth 2.2%
Other 4.1%

Source: Bureau of Economic Analysis, March 3, 2015

Worried about not sleeping . . . rest a bit easier

Study examines correlation between sleep hours, stroke risk A study in Neurology found that sleeping longer than eight hours a night was associated with a 46% increased risk of stroke. The study included 9,700 people. An 18% increased risk was seen among people who slept less than six hours, but the sample of people sleeping less than six hours was small enough that the association wasn’t considered significant. HealthDay News (2/25)

Better understanding of BP measures in frail elderly people

Study warns of risks when frail older patients take multiple BP meds Frail elderly nursing home residents with low systolic blood pressure taking two or more antihypertensive medications were at a twofold higher risk of dying within two years compared with peers, according to a study in JAMA Internal Medicine. Researchers also found a higher portion of those deaths were from cardiovascular causes — 14.5% of patients on multiple antihypertension medications, compared with 9.4% of others taking fewer than two blood pressure-lowering drugs. Medscape (free registration) (2/19)

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