According to the study data it is is exploring that probiotic use can lead to major economic; and health savings relating to flu like illness. This finding that general probiotic use in the U.S. could save the health care payer; and the economy around $1.4 billion in medical bills; and lost productivity due to acute respiratory tract infections (RTIs). to flu like illnesses.
But respiratory tract infections (RTIs) include influenza like illnesses (ILIs) with symptoms ranging from mild cold to the more serious flu. Although most acute RTI episodes resolve on their own; respiratory tract infections (RTIs) result in a high number of doctor visits and pose a heavy burden on society and the health care system.
Exploring probiotic use
As the study reporting probiotics use was associating with reducing number and duration of ILIs; antibiotic courses using and days absent from work. The use of probiotics in the management of common acute RTIs could contribute to savings in healthcare costs in the U.S. Acute respiratory tract infections (RTIs) of viral origin place a substantial burden on health care resources and society.
They estimated the number of ILI cases, the duration of illness, the costs associated with doctor visits and the number of days missed from school or work. For these estimates, they used the 2017-18 Influenza Season of FluView from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other national databases. Randomized controlled trials have shown positive effects of probiotics on clinical outcomes in these commonly occurring RTIs.
Courses of antibiotic prescriptions
These savings include the cost of more than two million courses of antibiotic prescriptions averted; and correspond to a decrease of 54.5 million sick days. When counting the savings from reduced productivity loss of 4.2 million workdays, the total savings for society would amount to $1.4 billion. In the YHEC scenario; generalized probiotic use could save $784 million per year for averted productivity loss related to absence from work due to illness.
Because both reviews included studies from different strains of probiotics; including both effective and ineffective ones, our results are based on an estimated average effect; With more evidence on which probiotics are effective in protecting against RTIs; it would be possible generate more definitive estimates of the potential cost savings associated with their use. But two meta-analyses reporting the efficacy of probiotics in reducing incidence and duration of RTIs; number of antibiotic courses, and days absent from work.