Discussing Economic Burden for Patients With Multiple Sclerosis: Bruce Bebo, PhD


The executive vice president of the National MS Society spoke on the updated data from an analysis on economic burden, which illustrated the ‘staggering’ impact of the disease. [WATCH TIME: 4 minutes]

WATCH TIME: 4 minutes

“Being in this age of so many disease-modifying therapies, it felt like a good time to update the economic burden of MS, and it is information that we and others can use to illustrate the magnitude of MS and its impact, both socially and economically.”

The economic burden of multiple sclerosis (MS) generates challenges for this patient population, with associated medical costs of prescription medication, outpatient medication and administration, as well as nonmedical and indirect expenses. Data from a study that evaluated the economic burden of MS in the US in 2019 were presented at the Americas Committee for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis (ACTRIMS) Forum 2022, February 24-26, in West Palm Beach, Florida, where investigators concluded that the burden of MS in the US has been previously underestimated.1

Lead investigator Bruce Bebo, PhD, executive vice president, National MS Society, sat down with NeurologyLive® at ACTRIMS to discuss findings, sharing his perspective on significant data, as well as the motivations that prompted the analysis. According to Bebo, one of the more staggering findings was the estimated total economic burden of $85.3 billion for MS, which is the additional cost above the cost of general medical care for the condition. This number, which is higher than any previous estimate, is likely due to the expense associated with treating the disease, as well as the increased prevalence of MS, he said. Another big take-home message is regarding direct medical expenses, of which 70% is related to disease-modifying therapy, which is a key driver of expenses for MS when compared with other conditions.

For more coverage of ACTRIMS Forum 2022, click here.

1. Bebo B, Cintina I, Yang W, et al. Economic burden of multiple sclerosis in 2019. Presented at ACTRIMS Forum 2022; February 24-26; West Palm Beach, FL and Virtual. Session CE3.1.
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