People who live with arthritis are acutely aware of the personal costs: Joint pain, reduced mobility and difficulty completely everyday tasks are among the many things they have to navigate. The condition also has a cost to the country at large – as the nation’s number one cause of disability, the economic impact of arthritis is significant.
“People miss more days to arthritis than any other condition”
This impact affects both employees and employers alike. According to the Arthritis Foundation, working age people people between the ages of 18 and 64 are less likely to be employed if they suffer from arthritis. One third of people with the condition face limitations in the ability to work a full-time schedule, as well as in the kind of work they are able to do. Even those who are employed deal with issues: people miss more days to arthritis than any other condition.
These figures underscore how costly arthritis can be to navigate, on both sides. Between lost wages and medical expenses, the condition costs $128 billion annually. This includes 44 million outpatient visits and nearly 1 million hospitalizations. Considering the employment difficulties faced by arthritis sufferers, the high medical costs can be all the more daunting.
Proper management of arthritis and its related symptoms isn’t just advisable on an individual level: it can also help the country’s economy as a whole. According to the CDC, costs directly attributable to arthritis equaled 1.2 percent of the entire national GDP in 2003, including nearly $50 billion just in lost wages.
One way to mitigate the impact of arthritis is through the use of compression sleeves. While they can not cure the condition, they can help sufferers navigate everyday tasks, such as working.