The latest brief from the New Brunswick Health Council (NBHC) outlines how the sustainability of the provincial health system is impacted by chronic health conditions such as hypertension, gastric reflux or diabetes. The brief, The Cost of Chronic Health Conditions to New Brunswick, illustrates the current health system spending and resource reallocation in the province, while showing how the trend of increased chronic health conditions creates higher costs and more health system demand than can be effectively managed.
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A new costing model developed by NBHC shows how costs increase at a faster rate with multiple chronic conditions, and a projection shows how the cost of care for chronic conditions could increase by $100 million or more within seven years.
“There is a great deal of recent emphasis on the cost of care to the aging population in the province,” says Stéphane Robichaud, CEO of the NBHC. “It is the increased probability of multiple chronic conditions as one ages that is the actual cost driver: it creates a greater need for medications, visits to the emergency room, and hospital or home care that can quadruple the cost of care for an individual.”
To address this risk the brief identifies two priority areas for the health system:
1. Reducing the incidence of new chronic health conditions in the population of New Brunswick through resource reallocation that improves illness prevention and health promotion
2. Managing existing chronic health conditions by aligning health system resources to population needs with an emphasis on comprehensive primary health services and other community health services
The brief is available online at www.nbhc.ca. Additional resources including an infographic and digital copies of selected charts and diagrams are also available.
The NBHC has been established as an independent organization that measures, monitors and evaluates New Brunswick’s health system performance through a citizen-centered dual mandate of performance measurement and citizen engagement.
New Brunswick Health Council: Christine Paré, 506-869-6714, firstname.lastname@example.org