One of the leading causes of suffering in the celiac disease community is the significant time gap between when a patient first presents disease symptoms and a correct diagnosis by a physician. Studies show the average delay for a correct celiac disease diagnosis is 6-10 years. Furthermore, we estimate that 2.5 million Americans suffer from celiac disease and have never been properly diagnosed.
The Celiac Disease Foundation has launched a number of initiatives to improve the diagnosis rate of celiac disease from the estimated 20-30% range it is currently. Recently, one of our most important initiatives achieved a major victory. In 2016, the Foundation petitioned Anthem of California, one of the state’s largest health insurers, to offer, for the first time, clinical guidelines for the diagnosis and treatment of celiac disease, to its massive base of 80,000 physicians who accept their insurance. We are proud to announce that last month, Anthem, after a lengthy review by its medical and legal departments, agreed to our petition and posted to its provider network clinical guidelines for both adults and children with celiac disease.
This is a huge step toward ending the needless suffering caused by either the lack of or delay in diagnosis of celiac disease in California. We will be working with Anthem and other insurance companies to expand the distribution of these clinical guidelines to provider networks across the country.
Anthem Offers Clinical Practice Guidelines (CPG) for Celiac Disease