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Cost of diabetes care in out-patient clinics of Karachi, Pakistan

DOI: 10.1186/1472-6963-7-189

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A prevalence-based 'Cost-of-Illness' study for diabetes care was conducted in six different out-patient clinics of Karachi, Pakistan from July to September 2006. A pre-tested questionnaire was administered to collect the data from 345 randomly selected persons with diabetes.The annual mean direct cost for each person with diabetes was estimated to be Pakistani rupees 11,580 (US$ 197). Medicines accounted for the largest share of direct cost (46%), followed by laboratory investigations (32%). We found that increased age, the number of complications and longer duration of the disease significantly increase the burden of cost on society (p < 0.001). Comparing cost with family income it was found that the poorest segment of society is spending 18% of total family income on diabetes care.This study concluded that substantial expenditure is incurred by people with diabetes; with the implication that resources could be saved by prevention, earlier detection and a reduction in diabetes co-morbidities and complications through improved diabetes care. Large scale and cost-effective prevention programs need to be initiated to maximise health gains and to reverse the advance of this epidemic.Diabetes Mellitus (DM) is a chronic and potentially disabling disease. It is a major and growing threat to global public health. The biggest impact of the disease is on adults of working age; particularly in developing countries [1]. The prevalence of diabetes and its adverse health effects have risen more rapidly in South Asia than in any other region of the world [2]. Diabetes significantly adds to the burden of preventable diseases and leads to economic losses that stem from high cost of care and loss of productivity [3]. In South Asia the majority of people live on or below the poverty line and having lack of access to healthcare services, lack of national welfare schemes and provision of health insurance for the poor population. The poor people can not afford to pay for healthcare serv


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