How Type 2 Diabetes Affects Your Workforce

Diabetes Is Serious and Common

One in three U.S. adults has prediabetes—96 million people! More than 8 in 10 don’t even know they have it. Prediabetes puts a person at increased risk for type 2 diabetes, heart attack, and stroke.

Without intervention, many people with prediabetes could develop type 2 diabetes within 5 years. Type 2 diabetes puts individuals at risk of serious health problems, including:

  • Heart attack
  • Stroke
  • Blindness
  • Kidney failure
  • Loss of toes, feet, or legs

Read the National Diabetes Statistics Report to learn more about the toll that diabetes is taking on the United States.

Diabetes Is Costly

People diagnosed with diabetes incur on average $16,750 annually in medical expenses.

Type 2 diabetes affects millions of individuals and their families, workplaces, and the US health care system. In 2017, the total cost of medical care and lost productivity for people with diagnosed diabetes was $327 billion, up 33% over a 5-year period. About 1 in 4 health care dollars is spent on people with diagnosed diabetes. The majority of expenses are related to hospitalizations and medications used to treat complications of diabetes.

People diagnosed with diabetes incur on average $16,750 annually in medical expenses. That’s about 2.3 times the medical expenses of a person without diabetes. The need to prevent type 2 diabetes has never been greater.

It’s no exaggeration; diabetes is a serious workforce issue. But you can help prevent type 2 diabetes; and it’s typically much cheaper to prevent diabetes than to treat the consequences of the disease. Learn how CDC-recognized lifestyle change programs can be an effective resource to help your employees prevent type 2 diabetes.


Boyle JP, Thompson TJ , Gregg EW, Barker LE, Williamson DF. (2010). Projection of the year 2050 burden of diabetes in the US adult population: dynamic modeling of incidence, mortality, and prediabetes prevalence. Population Health Metrics. Available from on May 7, 2013.

CDC’s Division of Diabetes Translation. National Diabetes Surveillance System. Available from

Yang W, Dall TM, Halder P, Gallo P, Kowal SL, Hogan PF. Economic costs of diabetes in the U.S. in 2012. Diabetes Care 2013;36(4):1033–1046. Available from

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