Insomnia, a huge economic burden
To examine the direct and indirect costs of untreated insomnia.
138,820 US-based employees between 18 and 64 years old who developed insomnia, and another group of 75,558 elderly patients with insomnia.
Medical claims data (direct costs) and records of absenteeism and short-term disability (indirect costs) between 1999 and 2003 were collected for the insomnia groups and compared with corresponding data from age-matched and sex-matched control groups.
- The average six-month direct medical costs for working-age individuals with insomnia were US$924 higher than those for matched individuals without the sleeping disorder ($4,755 vs $3,821).
- In terms of absenteeism-related costs, insomnia was associated with a $405 increase for a six-month period.
- For the elderly patient group, the medical costs rose by $1,143 if insomnia was present.
- At-work productivity, psychosocial functioning and accident rates were not included in the study calculations, but it is likely they would add further costs.
What does this mean?
Insomnia is associated with a considerable financial burden in the working-age population. Considering at-work productivity, psychosocial functioning and accident rates could further increase the insomnia burden.