By Lisa Gillespie, Kaiser Health News
For every dollar spent on treating depression, nearly five dollars more is spent on related medical conditions like back and chest pain, sleep disorders and migraines. Depression can also lead to lost productivity, placing a greater financial burden on businesses and the health care system, according to new research measuring the economic impact of depression.
“The fact that they’re finding such greater costs with all these different [related conditions] underscores how the fragmented system is not helpful for our economy because people with mental illness are not getting the rounded health care they need,” said Lynn Bufka, with the American Psychological Association, who was not affiliated with the study.
The total cost to the U.S. economy of major depressive disorder rose to $210 billion in 2010, up more than 20 percent from $173 billion in 2008. Continue reading