Several studies have documented reduced incidence of diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) in new-onset T1D when high-risk children are identified at an early age. As a result, researchers have questioned whether T1D screening for the purpose of preventing DKA is a feasible option.
UF researchers worked with Abt Associates to perform a cost-benefit analysis to determine if a T1D screening program to reduce the incidence of DKA at diagnosis in children less than 5 years old is cost effective.
The cost of screening included one-time HLA typing on the entire population followed by islet cell autoantibody testing in high-risk children every 6 months until age 5.
Unfortunately, unless HLA and autoantibody testing could be performed for less than $1 and $0.03, respectively, it is not economically viable. Current screening costs far outweigh the economic benefits of preventing new-onset DKA in children under 5 years of age.