Wednesday, July 10, 2013

CDC Finds Child Maltreatment Costs Medicaid an Estimated $5.9 Billion Per Year

CDC Finds Child Maltreatment Costs Medicaid an Estimated $5.9 Billion Per Year
In a study released today in Pediatrics, researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that child maltreatment costs the Medicaid system an estimated $5.9 billion per year. This important research provides the first ever estimates of the effect of child maltreatment on health care spending.

CDC researchers compared differences in health care spending for children identified by Child Protective Services (CPS) as at-risk for maltreatment (1999-2000) and children from the general population. The study found that children who had a case investigated by CPS had Medicaid expenditures that were $2600 higher per year (Medicaid claims info for 2000-2003).

This study underscores the importance of prevention efforts. Effective prevention programs can not only protect the health and well-being of children but reduce the impact of maltreatment on the health care system. Prevention strategies should support caregivers and teach positive parenting skills. In addition, they should improve parent-child relationships and provide parents with social support.

See CDC’s website for more information on child maltreatment prevention.