Abstract 19792: Obesity is Associated With Significantly Higher Healthcare Expenditures in a Large US Employee Population: The Baptist Health South Florida Employee Study
Introduction: Obesity is a recognized epidemic in the United States (US) and places a huge burden on the US economy and healthcare resources. In this study, we estimate impact of increasing burden on obesity on healthcare expenditure among employees of Baptist Health South Florida (BHSF), a large nonprofit healthcare organization.
Methods: BHSF employees participated in a health risk assessment in 2013. BMI was categorized as follows: < 25.0 kg/m2 as normal weight, 25.0 - 29.9 kg/m2 as overweight, 30.0 - 34.9 kg/m2 (Class I obesity), 35.0 - 39.9 kg/m2 (Class II obesity), and ≥ 40.0 kg/m2 (Class III obesity). Annual healthcare expenditure from health insurance claims data was aggregated and de-identified via an independent third party, guided by the institutional honest broker. Employees with missing information of interest & women pregnant just prior to or during the HRA were excluded from the study analysis. Two-part regression models were used to analyze the relationship between obesity categories and healthcare expenditure.
Results: The study sample consisted of 9216 employees (age 43.3 ± 12.1 years, 75% female) with 18.9% with Class 1, 8.5% with Class II, and 5.9% with Class III obesity. Overall, higher health expenditures were noted with increasing obesity burden among total study cohort and across ethnic subgroups (figure). After accounting for demographics, educational status and CV risk factors, excess bodyweight was associated with an estimated overall per capita expenditure of $3240 (95% CI $1624 - $4856) in class III obese, $1633 (95% CI $497 - $2767) in class II obese, and $1365 (95% CI $560 - $2170) in Class I obese compared to normal weight.
Conclusion: In this large diverse employee population, obesity is associated with significantly higher healthcare expenditures. Our findings stress the need for effective and comprehensive workplace lifestyle intervention programs to help reduce the obvious and immense economic burden of obesity.
Author Disclosures: C.U. Osondu: None. E.C. Aneni: None. J. Salami: None. J. Valero-Elizondo: None. M. Rouseff: None. S. Das: None. L. Roberson: None. J. Post: None. T. Feldman: None. E. Veledar: None. A.S. Agatston: None. K. Nasir: Consultant/Advisory Board; Modest; Dr. Nasir is on the advisory board for Quest Diagnostic and a consultant for Regeneron.
- © 2016 by American Heart Association, Inc.