How the Obesity and Diabetes Epidemics Are Straining Our Healthcare System

It’s no secret that obesity rates have skyrocketed in the United States, but most people fail to grasp the full impact of this epidemic. In the healthcare industry, however, obesity’s prevalence and damage are easy to spot when examining financial trends and injuries among medical professionals. Below, we offer just a few examples of the many ways in which today’s obesity and diabetes epidemics are impacting the healthcare system:

Hospital Staff Safety

Healthcare employees often suffer significant strain as they attempt to assist obese and immobile patients. These patients may need to be moved every few hours. While transfer systems can be called on for assistance, employees with no immediately available options may place their own wellbeing in jeopardy for the sake of their patients. Seemingly simple procedures or even routine checkups can quickly become dangerous when medical professionals struggle to maneuver around obese patients.

Increased Healthcare Spending

While mobility challenges are certainly cause for concern, arguably the most notable impact of obesity on the healthcare system involves sheer cost. A Cornell University study reveals that, as of 2015, treatment for obesity-related health concerns accounted for 7.91 percent of healthcare expenditures in 2015. Spending on obesity-related issues varies dramatically from one state to the next, however, with some devoting over 20 percent of Medicaid spending to health concerns prompted by obesity. Spending increases may also be prompted by obese patients’ tendency to delay preventative care for fear of receiving negative comments from staff members.

Obesity and diabetes may play a significant role in today’s greatest healthcare concerns, but negligence is also commonly at play. If negligence is to blame for your current suffering, let Regan Zambri Long PLLC guide you through the medical malpractice process. We can help you recover extensive damages — contact us today to learn more.