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Costs of illness analysis in Italian patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD): an update

Authors Dal Negro RW, Bonadiman L, Turco P, Tognella S, Iannazzo S

Received 14 November 2014

Accepted for publication 11 December 2014

Published 16 March 2015 Volume 2015:7 Pages 153—159


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Giorgio Colombo

Roberto W Dal Negro,1,2 Luca Bonadiman,1 Paola Turco,2 Silvia Tognella,3 Sergio Iannazzo4

1National Center for Respiratory Pharmacoeconomics and Pharmacoepidemiology, Verona, Italy; 2Research and Clinical Governance, Verona, Italy; 3General Hospital, ULSS 22 Regione Veneto, Bussolengo, Italy; 4SIHS Health Economics Consulting, Torino, Italy

Background: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a major cause of chronic morbidity and mortality worldwide, and its epidemiological, clinical, and socioeconomic impact is progressively increasing. A first estimate of the economic burden of COPD in Italy was conducted in 2008 (the SIRIO [Social Impact of Respiratory Integrated Outcomes] study). The aim of the present study is to provide an updated picture of the COPD economic burden in Italy.
Methods: Sequential patients presenting at the specialist center for the first time during the period 2008–2012 and with record file complete (demographic, clinical, lung function, and therapeutic data; health care resources consumed in the 12 months before the enrollment and for the 3 subsequent years) were selected from the institutional database.
Results: Two hundred and seventy-five COPD patients fitting the inclusion criteria were selected (226 males; mean age: 70.9 years [standard deviation: ±8.4 years]; 45.8% were from the north, 25.1% from central Italy, and 29.1% from south Italy). COPD-related average costs per patient in the 12 months before enrollment were as follows: hospitalization: €1,970; outpatient care: €463; pharmaceutical: €499; and indirect costs: €358. Average direct costs and total societal costs were €2,932 and €3,291, respectively. Direct cost was €2,461 (hospitalization: €1,570; outpatient: €344; and pharmaceutical: €547) in the first year of follow-up, while total societal cost was €2,707. No significant difference was reported in any cost category between sexes.
Conclusion: The therapeutic approach followed in a specialist center, based on the application of clinical guidelines, has been shown to be a highly effective investment for the long-term management of COPD. A small increase of pharmaceutical costs per year allowed a substantial saving in terms of hospitalizations, costs related to outpatient services, and indirect costs.

Keywords: COPD, health costs, pharmacoeconomic, sex dependency

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