Cost-effectiveness analysis of antiretroviral therapy in a cohort of HIV-infected patients starting first-line highly active antiretroviral therapy during 6 years of observation
Received 5 March 2014
Accepted for publication 8 October 2014
Published 17 February 2015 Volume 2015:6 Pages 53—60
Checked for plagiarism Yes
Review by Single-blind
Peer reviewer comments 3
Editor who approved publication: Dr Robert Howland
Franco Maggiolo,1 Giorgio L Colombo,2,3 Sergio Di Matteo,3 Giacomo M Bruno,3 Noemi Astuti,1 Elisa Di Filippo,1 Giulia Masini,1 Claudia Bernardini1
1Division of Infectious Diseases, Azienda Ospedaliera Papa Giovanni XXIII, Bergamo, Italy; 2University of Pavia, Department of Drug Sciences, Pavia, Italy; 3SAVE Studi Analisi Valutazioni Economiche, Milan, Italy
Objectives: Costs may play a role in deciding how and when to start highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) in a naïve patient. The aim of the present study was to assess the cost- effectiveness of treatment with HAART in a large clinical cohort of naïve adults to determine the potential role of single-tablet regimens in the management of patients with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). An incremental cost-effectiveness ratio analysis was performed, including a quality-adjusted life year approach.
Results: In total, 741 patients (females comprising 25.5%) were retrospectively included. The mean age was 39 years, the mean CD4 cell count was 266 cells/µL, and the mean viral load was 192,821 copies/mL. The most commonly used backbone was tenofovir + emtricitabine (77.6%); zidovudine + lamivudine was used in 10%, lamivudine + abacavir in 3%, and other nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor (NRTI) or NRTI-free regimens in 9.4% of patients. NNRTIs were used in 52.8% of cases, boosted protease inhibitors in 44.1%, and unboosted protease inhibitors and integrase inhibitors in 0.7% and 2.4%, respectively. Starting therapy at CD4 >500 cells/µL and CD4 351–500 cells/µL rather than at <201 cells/µL was the more cost-effective approach. The same consideration was not true comparing current indications with the possibility to start HAART at any CD4 value (eg, >500 cells per µL); in this case, the incremental cost-effectiveness ratio value was €199,130 per quality-adjusted life year gained, a higher value than the one suggested in guidelines. The single-tablet regimen (STR) invariably dominated any other therapeutic approach. Sensitivity analysis was performed, and starting right away with an STR was cost-effective even when compared with therapeutic strategies contemplating STR as simplification.
Conclusion: By integrating clinical data with economic variables, our study offers an estimate of the cost-effectiveness of the various first-line treatment strategies for patients infected with HIV and provides significant evidence to be used in future prospective pharmacoeconomic evaluations.
Keywords: cost-effectiveness, quality-adjusted life years, highly active antiretroviral therapy, single-tablet regimen
This work is published and licensed by Dove Medical Press Limited. The full terms of this license are available at https://www.dovepress.com/terms.php and incorporate the Creative Commons Attribution - Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License. By accessing the work you hereby accept the Terms. Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed. For permission for commercial use of this work, please see paragraphs 4.2 and 5 of our Terms.Download Article [PDF] View Full Text [HTML][Machine readable]