Skip to main content

Economic Burden of Parkinson Disease Nears $52 Billion in United States

December 10, 2020

The total economic burden across an estimated 1.04 million US residents diagnosed with Parkinson disease is $51.9 billion and is projected to climb to $79 billion across 1.6 million residents by 2037, according to a study published online in the journal npj Parkinson’s Disease.

“Our results underscore the need for preventive or treatment measures that directly reduce the prevalence and/or impacts of Parkinson disease,” researchers wrote, “and for policy initiatives to better support affected individuals and families, improve disease management, provide work-site support, and enhance employment and occupational training.”  

The analysis tapped multiple data sources to estimate the costs of Parkinson disease in 2017 and 20 years into the future. Sources included large claims databases from public and private payers as well as the Social and Financial Impact of Parkinson’s Disease Survey, which spanned 4548 respondents, to gauge indirect productivity losses for people with Parkinson disease and their care partners, disability benefits, and nonmedical costs, such as home renovations, motor vehicle modifications, and daily care expenditures.  

The estimated $51.9 billion in Parkinson disease costs in the United States in 2017 includes $25.4 billion in direct medical costs and $26.5 billion in indirect, nonmedical costs, according to the study. Indirect costs include $14.2 billion in productivity losses for patients and their caregivers, $7.5 billion in nonmedical costs, and $4.8 million in disability income.

Since the majority of patients are 65 and older, the largest medical cost burden is shouldered by Medicare. 

“Projected Parkinson disease prevalence will be more than 1.6 million with total economic burden surpassing $79 billion by 2037,” researchers wrote. “Our estimate of a 58% increase from 1.04 million to 1.6 million in the total number of persons with Parkinson disease from 2017 to 2037 is slightly lower than, but comparable to, several prior US-based or international projections.” 

Jolynn Tumolo


Yang W, Hamilton JL, Kopil C, et al. Current and projected future economic burden of Parkinson's disease in the U.S. NPJ Parkinsons Dis. 2020;6:15. Published 2020 Jul 9. doi:10.1038/s41531-020-0117-1

Agree or disagree with an article? Share your professional thoughts on an article you read.

Your Name
3 + 9 =
Solve this simple math problem and enter the result. E.g. for 1+3, enter 4.
Back to Top