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Potential economic burden of carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE) in the United States



The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention considers carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE) an urgent public health threat; however, its economic burden is unknown.


We developed a CRE clinical and economics outcomes model to determine the cost of CRE infection from the hospital, third-party payer, and societal, perspectives and to evaluate the health and economic burden of CRE to the USA.


Depending on the infection type, the median cost of a single CRE infection can range from $22 484 to $66 031 for hospitals, $10 440 to $31 621 for third-party payers, and $37 778 to $83 512 for society. An infection incidence of 2.93 per 100 000 population in the USA (9418 infections) would cost hospitals $275 million (95% CR $217-334 million), third-party payers $147 million (95% CR $129-172 million), and society $553 million (95% CR $303-1593 million) with a 25% attributable mortality, and would result in the loss of 8841 (95% CR 5805-12 420) quality-adjusted life years. An incidence of 15 per 100 000 (48 213 infections) would cost hospitals $1.4 billion (95% CR $1.1-1.7 billion), third-party payers $0.8 billion (95% CR $0.6-0.8 billion), and society $2.8 billion (95% CR $1.6-8.2 billion), and result in the loss of 45 261 quality-adjusted life years.


The cost of CRE is higher than the annual cost of many chronic diseases and of many acute diseases. Costs rise proportionally with the incidence of CRE, increasing by 2.0 times, 3.4 times, and 5.1 times for incidence rates of 6, 10, and 15 per 100 000 persons.

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