Food as Medicine: two scenarios

What might happen if Medicare and Medicaid covered 30% of healthy food purchases?

A team of researches from Tufts University, lead by Yujin Lee, Ph.D., a postdoctoral fellow at Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy modeled two different scenarios.

The Models

Scenario 1: Covered 30% of fruit and vegetable purchases.

Scenario 2: Covered 30% of fruit and vegetable purchases as well as 30% of purchases of whole grains, nuts, seafood, and plant oils.

The Findings

First scenario: Would prevent about 1.93 million cases of heart disease and would reduce healthcare utilization, leading to a savings of about $40 billion.

Second scenario: Would prevent close to 3.28 million cases of heart disease as well as 120,000 cases of diabetes and lead to a savings of $100 billion.

The study authors conclude that healthful food prescriptions would be more cost-effective after 5 years than preventive drug treatments. [1]

Researchers admit that the models cannot prove the health and cost effects of these food incentive programs. Rather, the estimates they uncovered provide evidence that can be considered and incorporated into the design and evaluation of incentive programs at federal and state levels.

Additionally, the investigation did not evaluate political or legal feasibility, which could be considered in future research.

What do you say?

"Should recipients of Medicare and Medicaid be reimbursed for healthy eating?"

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1 comment

  1. Il sistema sanitario Italiano non è preparata a supportare l’ impatto con la marea dei migranti. I casi di TBC sono in aumento ed iniziano i primi casi di altre infezioni tropicali.Purtroppo in italia i medici sono pochi ed i fondi destinati alla sanità sono stati ridotti.

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