Press Release Details

Progenity and Geisinger Publish First Study of Primary, Case-Based Data on Economic Burden of Preeclampsia

SAN DIEGO and DANVILLE, Pa. – December 10, 2019 – Progenity, a privately held biotechnology company, and Geisinger, one of the nation’s most innovative health services organizations, announced publication of a study in Obstetrics & Gynecology demonstrating the significant economic burden associated with preeclampsia.

This collaborative study is the first using primary data based on more than 2,100 mother/infant pairs that were matched and evenly distributed among three cohorts of uncomplicated, hypertensive, and preeclamptic pregnancies using electronic medical and billing records from Geisinger. The aim of the study was to provide case-based preeclampsia healthcare cost estimates for affected mothers and infants from a payor perspective. The results show preeclamptic pregnancies are approximately three times more costly than uncomplicated pregnancies. The cost difference was mainly due to infant care associated with premature delivery and higher rates of adverse events.

Key findings from the study showed the combined maternal and infant medical costs* for preeclamptic pregnancies were on average $28,603 more than uncomplicated pregnancies and $17,608 more than hypertensive pregnancies (2015 USD). The mean infant cost in the preeclamptic pregnancies was $28,898, almost eight times greater than for the uncomplicated cohort and more than double the hypertensive cohort (2015 USD). Mothers with preeclampsia delivered three weeks earlier (median 36.5 weeks of gestation) than women in the uncomplicated cohort and more than two weeks earlier than women in the hypertensive cohort.

“As a large regional healthcare system, preeclampsia is a growing issue we see impact hundreds of our patients annually. Understanding the medical care costs of a disease can help drive awareness and action towards improving patient care,” said Jing Hao, PhD, MD, Research Investigator, Geisinger. “This collaborative study with Progenity is the first using primary data from a health system to evaluate the economic burden of this disease from a payor perspective.”

Preeclampsia is a progressive condition that occurs during pregnancy and is typically characterized by elevated blood pressure, edema (swelling in hands or face), and protein in the urine. The cause of preeclampsia is still not fully understood, and symptoms can be difficult to differentiate from those of other hypertensive disorders, or uncomplicated pregnancy. It is estimated that preeclampsia can affect up to eight percent of all pregnancies and is a leading cause of maternal deaths worldwide. Despite this high incidence, little is known about the cost of preeclampsia to the U.S. healthcare system.

“While the clinical community is aware of the increasing incidence of preeclampsia and the detrimental outcomes it can have on mother and child, this study highlights the additional costs the healthcare system continues to bear, ” said Harry Stylli, PhD, CEO, chairman of the board, and co-founder of Progenity. “The Progenity team aims to address the overall burden of this condition by developing a test that could help doctors accurately rule out preeclampsia, allowing them to focus clinical management and economic resources on high-risk patients before the disease becomes life-threatening.”

*The dollar amounts published in the study are reflective of total costs to the health system and do not represent the total costs paid by patients, which are typically lower due to insurance coverage or financial assistance.

About Geisinger
Geisinger is committed to making better health easier for the more than 1.5 million consumers it serves. Founded more than 100 years ago by Abigail Geisinger, the system now includes 13 hospital campuses, a 600,000-member health plan, two research centers and the Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine. With 32,000 employees and 1,800 employed physicians, Geisinger boosts its hometown economies in Pennsylvania and New Jersey by billions of dollars annually. Learn more at