Food poisoning; Cost of illness; Quality-adjusted life years
Journal of Preventive Medicine & Public Health(예방의학회지), vol. 43, no. 4, pp. 352 - 361
Journal of Preventive Medicine & Public Health(예방의학회지)
Objectives: This study estimated the annual socioeconomic costs of food-borne disease in 2008 from a societal perspective and using a cost-of-illness method. Methods: Our model employed a comprehensive set of diagnostic disease codes to define food-borne diseases with using the Korea National Health Insurance (KNHI) reimbursement data. This study classified the food borne illness as three types of symptoms according to the severity of the illness: mild, moderate, severe. In addition to the traditional method of assessing the cost-of-illness, the study included measures to account for the lost quality of life. We estimated the cost of the lost quality of life using quality-adjusted life years and a visual analog scale. The direct cost included medical and medication costs, and the non-medical costs included transportation costs, caregiver's cost and administration costs. The lost productivity costs included lost workdays due to illness and lost earnings due to premature death. Results: The study found the estimated annual socioeconomic costs of food-borne disease in 2008 were 954.9 billion won (735.3 billion won-996.9 billion won). The medical cost was 73.4 -76.8% of the cost, the lost productivity cost was 22.6% and the cost of the lost quality of life was 26.0%. Conclusions: Most of the cost-of-illness studies are known to have underestimated the actual socioeconomic costs of the subjects, and these studies excluded many important social costs, such as the value of pain, suffering and functional disability. The study addressed the uncertainty related to estimating the socioeconomic costs of food-borne disease as well as the updated cost estimates. Our estimates could contribute to develop and evaluate policies for food-borne disease.