Diabetes 101

Prevalence and Cost

Type 2 diabetes is a growing public health epidemic affecting over 23 million Americans. Diabetes disproportionately affects the emerging majority (African-Americans and Hispanics), and Medicare and Medicaid populations.

  • Compared to Caucasian adults, the risk of diagnosed diabetes 66 percent higher among Hispanics and 77 percent higher among non-Hispanic blacks – approximately 12 percent of African Americans and Hispanics adults are living with diabetes compared to 7 percent of Caucasians.1
  • Aging populations have a higher prevalence of diabetes with more than 26 percent of the Medicare population managing the disease.1
  • There is a strong correlation between poverty, diabetes and diabetes related complications.2


Annually, the U.S. spends approximately $116 billion for diagnosed diabetes with an additional $58 billion in indirect costs.1 One out of every three Medicare dollars is spent on diabetes, with a high percentage attributed to tertiary illness caused by unmanaged or undermanaged diabetes.3 The prevalence of diabetes is skyrocketing in America, and the cost of treatment is a growing financial burden on individuals and the health care system.

1 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2011). National Diabetes Fact Sheet. Retrieved from https://www.cdc.gov/diabetes/pubs/pdf/ndfs_2011.pdf

2 Rabi, D. M., Edwards, A. L., Southern, D. A., Svenson, L. W., Sargious, P. M., Norton, P., Larsen, E. T., & Ghali, W. A. (2006). Association of socio-economic status with diabetes prevalence and utilization of diabetes care services. BMC Health Services Research, 6:124. doi: 10.1186/1472-6963-6-124

3Centers of Medicare and Medicaid Services. (2011). Medicare Healthcare Support Overview. Retrieved from https://www.cms.gov/CCIP/


Did You Know?

Diabetes is a growing public health epidemic affecting nearly 26 million Americans, and according to the American Diabetes Association, 1.9 million new cases of diabetes are diagnosed in people aged 20 years and older each year.2