Health and Medical News and Resources

General interest items edited by Janice Flahiff

Medicaid anti-smoking program saved big money, study says


English: Percent increase of success for six m...

Image via Wikipedia Date 14 June 2010Source Fast Facts: Smoking Cessation, by Robert West and Saul Shiffman, p. 59

Medicaid anti-smoking program saved big money, study says

Excerpt from the 13 January Stateline Daily article

Numerous studies have shown that investments in programs aimed at helping people quit smoking reap significant long-term reductions in health care costs. Even so, fiscal stress has caused states to dramatically reduce spending on anything that does not yield immediate returns.

Now new data suggests that states may not have to wait so long for the returns. According to astudy conducted by George Washington University, a Massachusetts Medicaid program saved $3 in Medicaid hospitalization expenses for every dollar it invested in a comprehensive smoking cessation counseling and treatment program — and the savings accrued in the first 16 months of the program.
While not all Medicaid patients who underwent the treatment were able to quit smoking permanently, the group as a whole had far fewer hospital admissions for cardiovascular problems than it did before entering the program. According to the report, the annual medical savings attributable to even a brief reduction in smoking was $571 per participant, far outweighing the $183-per-person cost of the program.
“The good news from a state budget perspective is that even if people stop smoking temporarily, there can be immediate savings,” says Leighton Ku, one of the study’s authors. “From a public health perspective we’d like to help people stop smoking for good,” Ku says. “But the study showed a rapid reduction in the number of people having heart attacks and other cardiovascular problems, and that led to immediate savings.”

January 15, 2012 Posted by | Public Health | , , , , | Leave a comment

Preventable Chronic Disease on the Rise; Obesity, Diabetes Undermining Country’s Overall Health

From the American Public Health Association 2011 Press Release

America’s Health Rankings Finds Preventable Chronic Disease on the Rise; Obesity, Diabetes Undermining Country’s Overall Health

  • Nation made no progress in improving health in 2011 after three years of gains
  • Modest decreases in smoking and preventable hospitalizations
  • Dramatic increases in obesity and diabetes, combined with still-too-high levels of tobacco use, are putting more people at risk for preventable illness and higher health expenditures
  • The Rankings indicates that every person that quit smoking in 2011 was offset by a person becoming obese
  • 2011 is the first year no state had an obesity prevalence under 20 percent
  • United Health Foundation launches “Take Action for Change” Facebook campaign to incent healthy behavior

Washington, D.C., Dec. 6, 2011 – United Health Foundation’s 2011 America’s Heath Rankings® finds that troubling increases in obesity, diabetes and children in poverty are offsetting improvements in smoking cessation, preventable hospitalizations and cardiovascular deaths. The report finds that the country’s overall health did not improve between 2010 and 2011 – a drop from the 0.5 percent average annual rate of improvement between 2000 and 2010 and the 1.6 percent average annual rate of improvement seen in the 1990s…..

December 13, 2011 Posted by | Public Health | , , , | Leave a comment


%d bloggers like this: