Societal costs and burden of otitis media in Portugal
Anouk Speets1, Judith Wolleswinkel1, Cristina Cardoso2
1Pallas health research and consultancy, Rotterdam, the Netherlands; 2GlaxoSmithKline, Algés, Portugal
Abstract: This study aimed to estimate the resource consumption and societal impact of otitis media (OM) in children younger than five years of age in Portugal. An Internet survey on generic childhood symptoms and diseases was administered to a sample of parents. This self-report survey had been previously implemented in other European countries. Medically confirmed OM was defined as symptoms of earache or “running ear” and/or a diagnosis of OM provided by a medical doctor. Direct medical, nonmedical, and indirect nonmedical costs were calculated for individual cases. Mean total costs per OM episode were estimated at €334. This corresponds to an estimated societal impact of 72 million €/year, of which 39% were indirect nonmedical costs. An epidemiological study should help to confirm the results of this study, and evaluate whether an intervention to reduce the occurrence and/or duration of OM may have an impact on societal costs and quality of life for affected families.
Keywords: otitis media, costs, societal burden, Portugal
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