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April 18, 2001

Glycemic Control and Health Care Costs for Patients With Diabetes

Author Affiliations

Stephen J.LurieMD, PhD, Senior EditorIndividualAuthorJody W.ZylkeMD, Contributing EditorIndividualAuthor

JAMA. 2001;285(15):1963-1964. doi:10.1001/jama.285.15.1963

To the Editor: Dr Wagner and colleagues1 use cost data from a health maintenance organization to assess whether enrollees with diabetes who achieve sustained improvement in glycemic control (at least a 1% decrease in hemoglobin A1c [HbA1c] level over 1 year that was maintained for a second year) have lower health care utilization and costs than individuals whose HbA1c improvement was less than 1% or was not sustained. Their results demonstrate that cost savings can be achieved, but only for individuals with the highest baseline HbA1c values (>10%). These results are entirely consistent with the finding of Testa and Simonson2 that improved glycemic control is associated with improved quality of life.

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