Aging population expected to impact health care costs
Caroline MacGregor January 14, 2013 | WGVU
The report, compiled
and presented by Seidman College of Business professors, Sonia Dalmia and Paul
Isely was funded by a grant from Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, Blue Care
Network, and Priority Health. The annual report looks at trends in Kent,
Ottawa, Muskegon and Allegan counties.
Factors like demographics, health care
profiles and the job market are considered. Professor Sonia Dalmia expects demographics
to directly impact health care.
As the population grows older research shows diabetes and obesity rates go up.The number
of people living in poverty in West Michigan has increased more than 6 percent in
12 years. Professor Paul Isely says people are not exercising enough, and smoking
and drinking too much. In fact, the research
shows West Michigan beats Detroit for the number of people admitting to five or
more drinks in the past month.
Between 2004 and 2011 the incidence of asthma increased 3
percent. Cancer rates are lower in West Michigan than other parts of
the state and country. Jobs in
health care continue to rise along with medical patents awarded in West
The findings of the report will
impact health care policy and decisions. Jeff Connolly, president of West
Michigan operations and managed care for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan
compared the report to an annual health care check up for health care
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