Skip Navigation Archive: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services www.hhs.gov
Archive: Agency for Healthcare Research Quality www.ahrq.gov
Archive print banner

Treatment Costs Nearly Double For Hay Fever and Other Allergies

This information is for reference purposes only. It was current when produced and may now be outdated. Archive material is no longer maintained, and some links may not work. Persons with disabilities having difficulty accessing this information should contact us at: https://info.ahrq.gov. Let us know the nature of the problem, the Web address of what you want, and your contact information.

Please go to www.ahrq.gov for current information.

AHRQ News and Numbers

Release date: June 11, 2008

Americans spent $11 billion on doctors' bills, prescription drugs, and other medical care to relieve allergy symptoms such as itchy or watery eyes, stuffy noses, wheezing, coughing, and headaches in 2005, according to the latest News and Numbers from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). The cost is nearly double the $6 billion spent in 2000.

AHRQ's analysis looked at spending on allergies, such as hay fever and other allergies caused by plant pollens, dust, dander, or animal hair. AHRQ's data indicated that:

  • In 2005, about 22 million Americans reported visiting a doctor, obtaining a prescription drug, being hospitalized, getting home care, or experiencing allergy symptoms.
  • Visits to doctors' office and hospital outpatient departments for allergies care accounted for $4 billion. The remaining roughly $7 billion was spent mostly on prescription drugs.
  • Between 2000 and 2005, average annual spending on treatment of allergies jumped from $350 per person to $520 per person.

AHRQ, which is part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, works to enhance the quality, safety, efficiency, and effectiveness of health care in the United States. The data in this AHRQ News and Numbers summary are taken from the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey, a detailed source of information on the health services used by Americans, the frequency with which they are used, the cost of those services, and how they are paid. For more information, go to Allergic Rhinitis: Trends in Use and Expenditures, 2000 and 2005.

For other information, or to speak with an AHRQ data expert, please contact Bob Isquith at Bob.Isquith@ahrq.hhs.gov or call 301-427-1539.

Current as of June 2008


 

The information on this page is archived and provided for reference purposes only.

 

AHRQ Advancing Excellence in Health Care