The FACET (Formoterol and Corticosteroid Establishing Therapy) study established that there is a clear clinical benefit in adding formoterol to budesonide therapy in patients who have persistent symptoms of asthma despite treatment with low to moderate doses of an inhaled corticosteroid. We combined the clinical results from the FACET study with an expert survey on average resource use in connection with mild and severe asthma exacerbations in the U.K., Sweden and Spain. The primary objective of this study was to assess the health economics of adding the inhaled long-acting beta2-agonist formoterol to the inhaled corticosteroid budesonide in the treatment of asthma. The extra costs of adding the inhaled beta2-agonist formoterol to the corticosteroid budesonide in asthmatic patients in Sweden were offset by savings from reduced use of resources for exacerbations. For Spain the picture was mixed. Adding formoterol to low dose budesonide generated savings, whereas for moderate doses of budesonide about 75% of the extra formoterol costs could be recouped. In the U.K., other savings offset about half of the extra cost of formoterol. All cost-effectiveness ratios are within accepted cost-effectiveness ranges reported from previous studies. If productivity losses were included, there were net savings in all three countries, ranging from Euro 267-1183 per patient per year. In conclusion, adding the inhaled, long-acting beta2-agonist formoterol to low-moderate doses of the inhaled corticosteroid budesonide generated significant gains in all outcome measures with partial or complete offset of costs. Adding formoterol to budesonide can thus be considered to be cost-effective.
OBJECTIVE: Assessment of patient preferences for attributes of asthma treatments. METHODS: Two hundred ninety-eight patients (age range, 18 to 60 years) from 15 centers in Sweden completed a questionnaire concerning their asthma, and ranked 18 alternative treatments using conjoint analysis. Patients were receiving treatment with either inhaled corticosteroids (ICS) and short-acting bronchodilator (n = 123) or ICS and long-acting bronchodilator (separate inhalers, n = 87; combination inhaler, n = 88). Attributes analyzed were maintenance treatment, additional reliever, time to onset and duration of reliever, number of symptom-free days (SFDs) per month, and out-of-pocket cost per month. RESULTS: Conjoint analysis showed that the most important aspect of treatment was SFD. Forty percent of the patients had
A better understanding of health care costs associated with asthma would enable the estimation of the economic burden of this increasingly common disease.
To determine the direct medical costs of asthma-related health care in British Columbia (BC).
Administrative health care data from the BC Linked Health Database and PharmaNet database from 1996 to 2000 were analyzed for BC residents five to 55 years of age, including the billing information for physician visits, drug dispensations and hospital discharge records. A unit cost was assigned to physician/emergency department visits, and government reimbursement fees for prescribed medications were applied. The case mix method was used to calculate hospitalization costs. All costs were reported in inflation-adjusted 2006 Canadian dollars.
Asthma resulted in $41,858,610 in annual health care-related costs during the study period ($331 per patient-year). The major cost component was medications, which accounted for 63.9% of total costs, followed by physician visits (18.3%) and hospitalization (17.8%). When broader definitions of asthma-related hospitalizations and physician visits were used, total costs increased to $56,114,574 annually ($444 per patient-year). There was a statistically significant decrease in the annual per patient cost of hospitalizations (P
Cites: Can Respir J. 2001 Mar-Apr;8 Suppl A:35A-40A11360046
Cites: CMAJ. 2001 Mar 6;164(5):625-3111258208
Cites: Health Serv Res. 2001 Jun;36(2):357-7111409817
OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the effects of a therapeutic outcomes monitoring (TOM) program on selected process and outcome measures. DESIGN: Prospective, controlled, multicenter study. SETTING: Community pharmacies throughout Denmark (16 intervention, 15 control). PATIENTS: Five hundred patients with asthma aged 16 to 60 years and treated in primary care. INTERVENTION: TOM is a community-based program for pharmaceutical care. Using a structured, seven-step, cyclical outcome improvement process, TOM pharmacists identify and resolve (or refer) problems with drug therapy that, if not addressed, might result in therapeutic failure or adverse effects. Equal emphasis is placed on the patient's perspective (e.g., coping, control, and empowerment) and the professional's perspective (e.g., adherence, patient knowledge, and therapeutic problems). TOM requires cooperation among pharmacists, patients, and physicians. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Asthma symptom status, days of sickness, health-related and asthma-specific quality of life, use of health care services and resources, and satisfaction with health care and pharmacy. INTERMEDIATE OUTCOME AND PROCESS MEASURES: Peak expiratory flow rate (PEFR), knowledge of asthma and asthma medications, inhalation errors, and drug therapy problems in the TOM group. RESULTS: The mean individual differences for TOM and control patients were tested. Beneficial effects were found for the following outcome measures: asthma symptom status, days of sickness, and health-related and asthma-related quality of life. Satisfaction with health care and pharmacy varied throughout the course of the project, with no significant difference between groups at the final evaluation. Although not statistically significant, differences in use of services were considered to be clinically significant and encouraging. Beneficial effects were found for knowledge of asthma and medications, inhalation errors, drug use and drug therapy problems. No significant differences were found for PEFR. CONCLUSION: The project demonstrated that therapeutic outcomes monitoring by community pharmacists is an effective strategy for improving the quality of drug therapy for asthma patients in primary health care.
Comment In: J Am Pharm Assoc (Wash). 2001 Jul-Aug;41(4):514, 51611486975
Comment In: J Am Pharm Assoc (Wash). 2001 Nov-Dec;41(6):792-311765100
BACKGROUND: In clinical trials of asthma, the outcomes are often good, but when the same treatment regimens are implemented in primary care, equally good results are not obtained. Objective: To investigate if addition of structured patient information and monitoring by an asthma diary in primary care improves asthma control. METHODS: 141 patients from 19 primary care centres were studied. The centres were randomised to a standard care group or to an intervention group. The intervention group received structured written and oral information about asthma and asthma medication, and were instructed to keep an asthma diary. The primary outcome was asthma control as assessed by the Asthma Control Questionnaire. Secondary outcomes were costs of asthma medication, the Mini Asthma Quality of Life Questionnaire score and lung function. RESULTS: Asthma Control Questionnaire score changes differed between the study groups (p
The aims of this study were to examine the frequency of, and the reasons for, emergency hospitalization for asthma among children. In addition, the costs of hospital treatment, preventive medication, and productivity losses of the caregivers were evaluated in a population-based setting during 1 year. Data on purchases of regular asthma medication were obtained from the Social Insurance Institution. In total, 106 (2.3/1000) children aged up to 15 years were admitted 136 times for asthma exacerbation to the Kuopio University Hospital in 1998. This represented approximately 5% of all children with asthma in the area. The trigger for the exacerbation was respiratory infection in 63% of the episodes, allergen exposure in 24%, and unknown in 13%. The age-adjusted risk for admittance was 5.3% in children on inhaled steroids, 5.8% in those on cromones, and 7.9% in those with no regular medication for asthma. The mean direct cost for an admission was $1,209 (median $908; range $454-6,812) and the indirect cost was $358 ($316; $253-1,139). The cost of regular medication for asthma was, on average, $272 per admitted child on maintenance. The annual total cost as a result of asthma rose eight-fold if a child on regular medication was admitted for asthma.
The objective of this study is to explore the relationship between variables that may influence pharmaceutical costs in asthma and to generate a predictive model for these costs in primary health care. The understanding of these relationships is important since costs of drugs may place unnecessary economic burden on patients and society. During 2003, prospective clinical data were collected from 105 patients in 24 primary health care centers located in Stockholm. The relationships between cost of drugs and quality of life, lung function, and asthma severity were analyzed in a regression model. Twenty-three percent of the observed variation in pharmaceutical costs could be explained by asthma severity, disease-specific quality of life, and clinical practice. There was a weak inverse correlation between pharmaceutical costs, generic quality of life, and lung function. Even when severity was accounted for, there were large variations in costs between different primary health care units.
The aim of this study was to identify risk factors for long-term adverse outcomes in children with asthma after visiting the emergency department (ED).
A prospective observational study was conducted at the ED of a pediatric tertiary hospital in Ontario, Canada. Patient outcomes (ie, acute asthma episodes and ED visits) were measured at baseline and at 1- and 6-months post-ED discharge. Time trends in outcomes were assessed using the generalized estimating equations method. Multiple conditional logistic regressions were used to model outcomes at 6 months and examine the impact of drug insurance coverage while adjusting for confounders.
Of the 269 children recruited, 81.8% completed both follow-ups. ED use significantly reduced from 39.4% at baseline to 26.8% at 6 months (P
Asthma-related health resource use and costs may be influenced by increasing asthma prevalence, changes to asthma management guidelines, and new medications over the last decade. The objective of this work was to analyze direct asthma-related medical costs, and trends in total and per-patient costs of hospitalizations, physician visits, and medications.
A cohort of asthma patients from British Columbia (BC), Canada, was created. Asthma patients were identified using a validated case definition. Costs for hospitalizations, physician visits, and medications were calculated from billing records (in 2008 Canadian dollars). Trends in total and per-patient costs over the study period were analyzed using Generalized Linear Models.
398,235 patients satisfied the asthma case definition (mid-point prevalence 8.0%). Patients consumed $315.9 million (M) in direct asthma-related health resources between 2002 and 2007. Hospitalizations, physician visits, and medication costs accounted for 16.0%, 15.7% and 68.2% of total costs, respectively. Cost of asthma increased from $49.4 M in 2002 to $54.7 M in 2007. Total annual costs attributable to hospitalizations and physician visits decreased (-39.8% and -25.5%, respectively; p
Cites: Can Respir J. 1999 Nov-Dec;6(6):521-510623789
Cites: Can Respir J. 2006 Jul-Aug;13(5):253-916896426