Auto Accident Injuries Result in $18B in Lifetime Medical Costs: CDC

A new report by government safety officials shows that auto accident injuries result in an estimated $18 billion in lifetime medical costs and result in Americans spending a million days in the hospital each year. 

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released a report on October 7, which indicates that more than 2.5 million people went to the emergency room in 2012, and nearly 200,000 were hospitalized that year due to injuries suffered in motor vehicle crashes.

Nearly one million of those injured in auto accidents in 2012 were teens or young adults under the age of 30.

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“In 2012, nearly 7,000 people went to the emergency department every day due to car crash injuries,” CDC Principle Deputy Director Ileana Arias said. “Motor vehicle crash injuries occur all too frequently and have health and economic costs for individuals, the health care system, and society. We need to do more to keep people safe and reduce crash injuries and medical costs.”

The CDC report found that for every person killed in an auto accident in 2012, there were eight people hospitalized, and 100 people treated and released from emergency departments.

Each emergency room visit cost about $3,300 and each hospitalization costs about $57,000.

However, the report does suggest that the numbers are trending down. There were 400,000 fewer emergency room visits due to auto accident injuries in 2012 than there were in 2002, the CDC reports. That saved Americans $1.7 billion in lifetime medical costs, and $2.3 billion in work loss costs.

The CDC found that changes at the state level could bring those numbers down even further, and recommended that states:

  • Increase seat belt use through primary enforcement seat belt laws
  • Require car seats or booster seats for all children 8 and under and under 57 inches tall
  • Use graduated driver licensing laws to improve teen driver safety
  • Use sobriety checkpoints and media campaigns increasing police presence to support traffic safety laws.

1 Comments

  • TimothyOctober 15, 2014 at 6:16 am

    i was in a MVA in Aug, 1994. I was employed as a Pharmaceutical Sales Rep., at the time. The MVA happened while working in my territory of responsibility. On company time and business. I suffered a spinal cord injury which left me with a neurogenic bladder, bilateral-upper and lower body neuropathy, and a spinal cord disease as DX'd by the hospital head Pathologist, and the disease is "Arachnoidit[Show More]i was in a MVA in Aug, 1994. I was employed as a Pharmaceutical Sales Rep., at the time. The MVA happened while working in my territory of responsibility. On company time and business. I suffered a spinal cord injury which left me with a neurogenic bladder, bilateral-upper and lower body neuropathy, and a spinal cord disease as DX'd by the hospital head Pathologist, and the disease is "Arachnoiditis." I have been treated or lack there of! Since being deemed that I have reached "Maximum Medical Benefit" and therefore deemed that any further treatment would only be of "palliative" benefit! My medical case is complex do to the fact of the neurological affect that my resulting MVA injuries have produced. The Workers Compensation IME's have basically given me a prognosis based on subjective evaluation for the most part. I have been mistreated in this enviroment, and treated or mistreated by Malicious Medical Malcontents! My current condition is horrible as I have been left without the proper care necessary for leading the best quality of life possible. The MVA, was not my fault! I am the victim! I'm currently in need for a total knee replacement as a result of "falls" directly related to my neurological issues, In a fall while standing, I ruptured my ACL and it was unrepairable! This happened in 2005. I've had lumbar and cervicle fusions. I have been grossly mistreated by those associated with Workers Compensation IME's, and those so called treating doctors. My current legal council has been less than helpful and I'm financially and physically screwed! I am married (27 years) I have a home to which I must sell and move to another state. If there is anyone out there that can assist me in getting the proper medical care, I would be very grateful!. I'm unable to buy a supplemental insurance policy to go with my MEDICARE..SCREWED IN NJ!

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