Type 2 diabetes can lead to reduced productivity during working age. We aimed to estimate productive life years lost associated with type 2 diabetes on the individual and population level in Germany in 2020 and 2040, while accounting for future trends in mortality.Based on a mathematical projection model, we estimated age- and sex-specific productivity losses associated with type 2 diabetes during working age (20-69 years) in Germany in 2020 and 2040. Productivity losses in terms of excess mortality (years of life lost, YLL) and reductions in labour force participation, presenteeism and absenteeism (years of productivity lost, YPL) were summed to calculate productivity-adjusted life years (PALY) lost. Input data for the projection were based on meta-analyses, representative population-based studies and population projections to account for future trends in mortality.Compared with a person without type 2 diabetes, mean PALY lost per person with type 2 diabetes in 2020 was 2.6 years (95% CI 2.3, 3.0). Of these 2.6 years, 0.4 (95% CI 0.3, 0.4) years were lost due to YLL and 2.3 (95% CI 1.9, 2.6) years were lost due to YPL. Age- and sex-specific results show that younger age groups and women are expected to lose more productive life years than older age groups and men. Population-wide estimates suggest that 4.60 (95% CI 4.58, 4.63) million people with prevalent type 2 diabetes in 2020 are expected to lose 12.06 (95% CI 10.42, 13.76) million PALY (1.62 million years due to YLL and 10.44 million years due to YPL). In 2040, individual-level PALY lost are projected to slightly decrease due to reductions in YLL. In contrast, population-wide PALY lost are projected to increase to 15.39 (95% CI 13.19, 17.64) million due to an increase in the number of people with type 2 diabetes to 5.45 (95% CI 5.41, 5.50) million.On the population level, a substantial increase in productivity burden associated with type 2 diabetes was projected for Germany between 2020 and 2040. Efforts to reduce the incidence rate of type 2 diabetes and diabetes-related complications may attenuate this increase.
Thaddäus Tönnies, Annika Hoyer, Ralph Brinks