Traumatic brain injury (TBI) remains a leading cause of death and disability in America. According to the CDC,a staggering 1.5 million people sustain TBI leading to:
Ã¢Â€Â¢ 50,000 people dying
Ã¢Â€Â¢ 230,000 people are hospitalized and survive
Ã¢Â€Â¢ 80,000-90,000 experience long-term disability
About 5.3 million people live with TBI-related disability in the U.S. alone,according to insurance claim for a car accident . Although the rate of TBI-related deaths has declined 20% over the past 20 years,the economic burden of dealing with the costs of brain injury remains very high. It’s estimated that the lifetime costs of dealing with TBI range from $85,000 to $3 million per patient,not counting other major economic costs such as loss of productivity and social economic costs.
Actual costs incurred during the first year vary depending on the severity of the injury,but generally break down as follows:
Ã¢Â€Â¢ For TBI survivors who require rehabilitation services,costs approach $200,000 during the first year and $18,000 for patients who do not require rehabilitation
Ã¢Â€Â¢ Medical and non-medical costs after hospitalization including insurance,home modifications and vocational rehabilitation average $151,587
Ã¢Â€Â¢ Patients with minor head injuries can still rack up to $15,000 in clinical testing,medication,and follow-up appointments
The psychosocial aspect when dealing with the costs of a brain injury can be just as harsh as the economic aspect. About 52% of patients who survive severe head trauma become moderately or severely disabled within the first two years after the injury. Many of the patients who are lucky to escape physical disabilities are never able to recover full social independence.
About four years after the injury,most survivors live with their families and neither work nor attend school,which means they need a personal injury law firm looking out for them. This imposes a significant psychological burden on their families and caretakers. Many marriages and partnerships end up breaking up thus increasing the risk of social isolation. Furthermore,mood disorders are very common in survivors and the risk of suicide high.
It’s generally accepted that disturbances in cognition (frequently in the form of executive dysfunction),mood and behavior are some of the most debilitating aspects when dealing with the costs of a brain injury.