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Cataract surgery saves $123.4 billion in direct, indirect costs, delivers a 4,567 percent return to society
Date:11/15/2013

85 percent less expensive than in 1985 after adjusting for inflation. Furthermore, the inflation-adjusted physician fee in 2012 was only 10.1 percent of what it had been in 1985.

In terms of the patient value, the researchers found that cataract surgery yields an overall 36.2 percent gain in quality-of-life when performed in both eyes. Without cataract surgery, cataract-related vision loss can become so bad that individuals lose their independence in a variety of ways, such as being able to drive, read their mail, keep up their home and administer their medications.

"Most people regard healthcare costs, which are estimated by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid at $2.81 trillion in 2012, as expenditures and not investment dollars that return patient value and financial value," said lead researcher Melissa M. Brown, M.D., of the Center for Value-Based Medicine and Wills Eye Hospital. "Our data demonstrates that this approach is far too simplistic and that estimating the return on investment provides a more complete picture. Cataract surgery is a paradigm for the premise that healthcare interventions, in addition to creating substantial patient value, can also create considerable economic wealth."


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Contact: Media Relations
media@aao.org
American Academy of Ophthalmology
Source:Eurekalert

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