Economic Benefit

In the United States there are 6 million Intensive Care Unit (ICU) admissions per year. These ICU patients consume 13% of all healthcare dollars spent on hospitalized patients, with their average cost of care being at least double of that of a patient who never has to go to the ICU. When patients are admitted to an ICU they are in an extremely stressed out state, which causes all of their stress hormones to be increased. These elevated stress hormone levels serve to counteract the glucose lowering properties of insulin, thus causing the ICU patients to have elevated blood glucose levels. Studies have shown that elevated blood glucose levels in ICU patients increases their morbidity and mortality rates, with this being true whether or not the patient has diabetes. Studies have also shown that effective glucose control can save anywhere from $1,500 to $4,000 per patient. In addition, the mortality rates can be lowered by at least 20%. Given overall ICU mortality rates of 10%, effective glucose control has the potential to save 5 billion dollars and 60,000 lives on an annual basis in the U.S. – and this assumes it is only used on half of the patients admitted into the ICU!