This randomized controlled trial was designed to evaluate the 2-year costs and effects of a proactive, public health nursing case management approach compared with a self-directed approach for 129 single parents (98% were mothers) on social assistance in a Canadian setting. A total of 43% of these parents had a major depressive disorder and 38% had two or three other health conditions at baseline.
Study participants were recruited over a 12 month period and randomized into two groups: one receiving proactive public health nursing and one which did not.
At 2 years, 69 single parents with 123 children receiving proactive public health nursing (compared with 60 parents with 91 children who did not receive public health nursing services) showed a slightly greater reduction in dysthymia and slightly higher social adjustment. There was no difference between the public health and control groups in total per parent annual cost of health and support services. However, costs were averted due to a 12% difference in non-use of social assistance in the previous 12 months for parents in the public health nursing group. This translates into an annual cost saving of 240,000 dollars (Canadian) of costs averted within 1 year for every 100 parents.
In the context of a system of national health and social insurance, this study supports the fact that it is no more costly to proactively service this population of parents on social assistance.
BACKGROUND: The CURE study demonstrated that clopidogrel prevents a range of ischaemic cardiovascular events in patients with Acute Coronary Syndromes (unstable angina or non-ST-segment elevation MI). DESIGN: We undertook an economic analysis of the use of clopidogrel in the UK, USA, Sweden, France and Canada based on the CURE study. METHODS: The costs of hospitalization, study drug and other medications were calculated, based on resource utilization for all patients in CURE. Unit costs were obtained for all resource items for each country, and are reported in local currencies in 2001 prices. RESULTS: While hospitalization costs were lower in the clopidogrel group, when the acquisition cost of clopidogrel for 9 months is included, the average cost per patient is higher in the clopidogrel group than the placebo group in all countries [difference in costs (with 95% CI) 208 pounds sterling (119, 297), 451 US dollars (58, 845), SKr 2571 (728, 4412), 325 euros (85, 565), 161 Canadian dollars (-185, 506)]. The absolute reduction in the number of total primary events was 2.0%, resulting in an incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER) of 10,366 pounds sterling in the UK, 22,484 US dollars in the USA, SKr 127,951 in Sweden, 16,186 euros in France, and 7973 Canadian dollars in Canada per primary event avoided with clopidogrel. CONCLUSIONS: Clopidogrel in CURE reduced hospitalization costs but the acquisition cost of clopidogrel creates an overall increase in direct health care costs over 9 months. Nevertheless, the cost-effectiveness is in a range comparable to other therapies currently utilized for acute coronary syndromes.
The HOPE study has demonstrated that ramipril is beneficial (ie, prevents cardiovascular death, myocardial infarction, and stroke) for a broad range of patients without evidence of left ventricular dysfunction or heart failure who are at high risk for cardiovascular event. In this study, we report the cost implications, in both the United States and Canada, of the use of ramipril after the HOPE study.
A third-party perspective was chosen (Medicare for the United States and Ministry of Health for Canada). We calculated the costs of the management strategies of ramipril and placebo. An annual discount rate of 3% was used over the 4.5 years of follow-up. Sensitivity analyses were performed. Costs are reported in United States dollars and in Canadian dollars, respectively. The total costs per patient (including acquisition costs of ramipril) were not different between the groups in both countries (United States, $13 520 versus $13 631; Canada, $8702 versus $8588). From the distribution of cases in the bootstrap analysis, we found that 90% of cases fall either into a cost-neutral or cost-saving situation (64% in United States and 27% in Canada) or into a cost-effectiveness situation with an incremental cost-effectiveness ratio
The Atrial Fibrillation Clopidogrel Trial With Irbesartan for Prevention of Vascular Events-Aspirin (ACTIVE-A) demonstrated that in patients with atrial fibrillation unsuitable for vitamin K antagonist (VKA) therapy, a combination of clopidogrel and aspirin reduced stroke risk by 28% but increased major hemorrhage risk by 57%. This analysis examined cost implications of adding clopidogrel to aspirin (C+A) for ACTIVE-A patients.
Health care use was extracted for each patient. We considered only direct costs and included only hospitalization events. We used Canadian unit costs for the health care resources consumed and Canadian list price of brand clopidogrel. Costs, in 2008 Canadian dollars, were discounted at 3% per year.
C+A reduced costs of health care use components except for the study medication. Stroke prevention resulted in important cost savings that offset the cost of clopidogrel. Total costs per patient for C+A were $14,132 (95% confidence interval [CI], $13,445-$14,842), compared with $13,756 (95% CI, $13,032-$14,544) for aspirin alone, resulting in incremental cost of $376 (95% CI, -$645 to $1397) for C+A, confirmed through bootstrap simulation. Estimates were sensitive to the price of clopidogrel, varying from cost savings to a significant increase.
C+A in patients unsuitable for VKA therapy is cost neutral (following our predefined conditions) as cost of clopidogrel is offset by prevention of costly strokes. These findings support the use of C+A in ACTIVE-A patients for whom VKA therapy is unsuitable.
The two main treatment options for esophageal achalasia are laparoscopic distal esophageal myotomy (LM) and pneumatic dilatation (PD). Our objective was to compare the costs of these management strategies.
We constructed a decision analytic model consisting of two treatment strategies for patients diagnosed with achalasia. Probabilities of events were systematically derived from a literature review, supplemented by expert opinion when necessary. Costs were estimated from the perspective of a third-party payer and society, including both direct and indirect costs. Future costs were discounted at a rate of 5.5% over a time horizon of 5 and 10 years. Uncertainty in the probability estimates was incorporated using probabilistic sensitivity analyses. We tested uncertainty in the model by modifying key assumptions and repeating the analysis.
From the societal perspective, the expected cost per patient was $10,789 (LM) compared with $5,315 (PD) five years following diagnosis, and $11,804 (LM) compared with $7,717 (PD) after 10 years. The 95% confidence interval of the incremental cost per patient treated with LM was ($5,280, $5,668) after five years, and ($3,863, $4,311) after 10 years. The incremental cost of LM was similar from the third-party payer perspective and in the secondary model analyzed.
Initial LM is a more costly management strategy under all clinically plausible scenarios tested in this model. Further research is needed to determine patients' preferences for the two treatment modalities, and society's willingness to bear the incremental cost of LM for those who choose it.
To perform an economic evaluation of the Prophylaxis in Medical Patients with Enoxaparin (MEDENOX) trial from a Canadian perspective.
Using a decision tree model, cost effectiveness analysis was carried out to compare the costs and consequences of thromboprophylaxis using enoxaparin 40 mg with placebo in tertiary and community settings. From a third party payer's perspective, the model calculated the expected rate of symptomatic venous thromboembolism (VTE), and the total expected cost of prophylaxis and VTE management, including inpatient and outpatient treatment, professional fees and long term therapy. Data were derived directly from the MEDENOX trial. Costs are direct medical costs in year 2000 Canadian dollars.
In a tertiary setting in which the estimated inpatient to outpatient deep vein thrombosis treatment ratio was 10%:90%, the total expected cost per patient was 64 dollars in the enoxaparin group and 62 dollars in the placebo group. The expected symptomatic VTE rates were 0.8% and 3.1% in the enoxaparin and placebo groups, respectively. The incremental cost effectiveness of enoxaparin 40 mg versus placebo was 87 dollars/VTE avoided. In a community hospital setting (with a 50%:50% inpatient to outpatient deep vein thrombosis treatment ratio), the total expected cost per patient was 68 dollars in the enoxaparin group compared with 72 dollars in the placebo group, indicating that prophylaxis with enoxaparin 40 mg was cost saving. The model was sensitive to the inpatient to outpatient ratio. However, within each setting, the results were not sensitive to changes in key variables.
For patients hospitalized for acute respiratory failure, congestive heart failure or acute infectious disease and who are at moderate risk of developing VTE, thromboprophylaxis with enoxaparin 40 mg daily is a cost effective strategy in both tertiary and community settings.
Diabetes mellitus affects not only life expectancy but also quality of life. The Action to Control Cardiovascular Risk in Diabetes (ACCORD) trial's health-related quality of life (HRQOL) and cost-effectiveness components will enable the assessment of the relative importance of the various outcomes from the point of view of patients, provide an understanding of the balance between the burdens and benefits of the intervention strategies, and offer valuable insights into adherence. The HRQOL measures used include the Diabetes Symptoms Distress Checklist; the 36-Item Short Form Health Survey, Version 2 (SF-36) (RAND Corporation, Santa Monica, CA); the Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ) depression measure (Pfizer Inc, New York, NY); the World Health Organization (WHO) Diabetes Treatment Satisfaction Questionnaire (DTSQ); and the EuroQol Feeling Thermometer (EuroQol Group, Rotterdam, Netherlands). The cost-effectiveness analysis (CEA) in ACCORD will provide information about the relative economic efficiency of the different interventions being compared in the trial. Effectiveness will be measured in terms of cardiovascular event-free years gained and quality-adjusted life-years gained (using the Health Utilities Index Mark 3 [HUI-3] [Health Utilities Inc., Dundas, Ontario, Canada] to measure health-state utility). Costs will be direct medical costs assessed from the perspective of a single-payer health system collected by means of patient and clinic cost forms and hospital discharge summaries. The primary HRQOL and CEA hypotheses mirror those in the main ACCORD trial, addressing the effects of the 3 main ACCORD interventions considered separately. There are also secondary (pairwise reference case) comparisons that do not assume independence of treatment effects on HRQOL. CEA will be done on a subsample of 4,311 ACCORD participants and HRQOL on a subsample of 2,053 nested within the CEA subsample. Most assessments will occur through questionnaires at baseline and at 12, 36, and 48 months.
A randomized control trial completed in the Hamilton-Wentworth and Halton regions of Ontario, Canada, was created to assess the effects and expense of age-appropriate provider-initiated and subsidized versus self-directed and self-financed methods of recreation. Upon completion, this study proved that the annual per-person expenditure for the subsidized, quality recreation paid for itself by children's lower use of healthcare and social services. The children within the subsidized recreation group had lower use of physician, physiotherapy, probation, children's aid society, social work, psychologist and services in comparison with those in the non-subsidized group. The subsidized group also proved to be beneficial for the parents as well. The use of health and social services, by the parents in the subsidized group, was also decreased in comparison with those of the self-financed group. This group also proved to have improvement of the global socioeconomic status, with a 10% greater exit from the social assistance program within 1 year.
With the emergence of radiosurgery as a new radiotherapeutic technique, health care decision makers are required to incorporate community need, cost and patient preferences when allocating radiosurgery resources. Conventional patient utility measures would not reflect short term preferences and would therefore not inform decision makers when allocating radiosurgery treatment units. The goal of this article is to demonstrate the feasibility of cost-benefit analysis to elicit the yearly net monetary benefit of robotic radiosurgery. To calculate the yearly incremental cost of robotic radiosurgery as compared to fixed gantry radiosurgery we used direct local cost data. We assumed a standard 10 year replacement and 5% amortization rate. Decision boards summarizing the clinical scenario of brain metastases and the difference between robotic and fixed gantry radiosurgery in terms of immobilization, comfort and treatment time were then presented to a sample of 18 participants. Participants who preferred robotic radiosurgery were randomly assigned to either a low ($1) or high ($5) starting point taxation based willingness-to-pay algorithm. The yearly incremental cost of providing robotic radiosurgery was $99,177 CAD. The mean community yearly willingness-to-pay for robotic radiosurgery was $2,300,000 CAD, p = 0.03. The calculated yearly net societal benefit for robotic radiosurgery was $2,200,823 CAD. Among participants who preferred robotic radiosurgery there was no evidence of starting point bias, p = 0.8. We have shown through this pilot study that it is feasible to perform cost-benefit analysis to evaluate new technologies in Radiation Oncology. Cost-benefit analysis offers an analytic method to evaluate local preferences and provide accountability when allocating limited healthcare resources.