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Lupus is a Significant Cost to Employers, According to Thomson Reuters Study
Date:1/9/2009

ANN ARBOR, Mich., Jan. 9 /PRNewswire/ -- A study published today in The Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (http://tinyurl.com/9x2ebc) found that the mean annual price tag for lupus - including medical expenditures, absence from the job, and short-term disability costs - was nearly $20,000 per patient. The mean cost climbed to more than $60,000 per patient when lupus was accompanied by the kidney disease nephritis, as it often is. That's more than the average annual cost of other chronic conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

The Healthcare business of Thomson Reuters (http://www.thomsonreuters.com/business_units/healthcare/) conducted the study in collaboration with researchers from the University of California at San Francisco, Emory University and Bristol-Myers Squibb, which funded the research.

The project analyzed the direct and indirect cost to employers of patients with lupus, with and without nephritis, and compared those cost burdens to that of other chronic diseases commonly found in an employed population.

"Lupus is a chronic, multi-system, autoimmune disease that primarily affects young people - particularly women - in their prime working years," said Ginger Carls, economist and researcher for Thomson Reuters and lead author of the study. "While rare, it is an expensive condition that imposes a significant burden on employers in terms of both productivity loss and direct healthcare costs. Therapies that can better manage lupus provide opportunities for savings to employers and improved quality of life for patients."

Researchers used administrative medical claims data from the Thomson Reuters MarketScan(R) databases, represent
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SOURCE Thomson Reuters
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