Potential Savings Through Prevention of Avoidable Chronic Illness Among CalPERS State Active Members

April 2012

This report estimates the burden of preventable chronic disease on active members of the California Public Employees Retirement System and describes the distribution of that burden by demographic characteristics and across geographic areas, state agencies/departments and participating health plans. The estimates show that a 1 percent reduction in the prevalence of the common conditions included in the analysis could save the state $3.6 million per year. The literature suggests that reductions of 5 to 15 percent are feasible, depending on how well-designed and targeted interventions are, indicating potential savings of $18 million to $54 million annually. You can access the full report here.

In 2008, TFAH released Prevention for a Healthier America: Investments in Disease Prevention Yield Significant Savings, Stronger Communities, which found that a small strategic investment in disease prevention could result in significant savings in U.S. health care costs.  In the report, TFAH concluded that an investment of $10 per person per year in proven community-based programs to increase physical activity, improve nutrition, and prevent smoking and other tobacco use could save the country more than $16 billion annually within five years.  This is a return of $5.60 for every $1. The report can be accessed at