Socioeconomic relevance of selected treatment strategies in patients with chronic heart failure.
ABSTRACT More than 2.8% of the population in the USA suffer from chronic heart failure, a condition that primarily afflicts people above the age of 60 years, and results in major expenses for social and health care of affected patients, their caregivers and families. The mainstay of treatment is drug therapy, complemented by comprehensive rehabilitation, invasive procedures, palliative treatment and monitoring. While sufficient health economic evidence exists on the cost-effectiveness of certain standard drugs, such as angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors or beta-blockers, little or no information exists on the cost effectivty of diuretics or aldosterone antagonists. Recently, introduced treatment strategies such as ventricular assistance devices or telemonitoring have yet to be evaluated for their cost-effectiveness in terms of risk of hospitalization, life expectancy and quality of life. With respect to the aging population and the drastically increasing costs of healthcare for heart failure patients, the goal is a more conscious and cost-effective resource allocation. This can help reduce the incidence of over and under treatment, diminish side effects and consequently improve symptoms, quality of life and life expectancy in the affected population. Further clinical trials and health economic analyses are necessary to optimize recommendations for healthcare of patients with chronic heart failure.
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ABSTRACT: Angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors reduce heart failure death and hospitalization. Prescribed doses often are lower than randomized clinical trial (RCT) targets and practice guideline recommendations. To assess the cost-effectiveness of high- versus low-dose ACE inhibitor therapy in the ATLAS trial. A 19-nation RCT of high-dose (32.5-35.0 mg/day) versus low-dose (2.5-5.0 mg/day) lisinopril in 3164 patients with class II-IV heart failure and left ventricular ejection fraction < or = 30%. Data on clinical outcomes and major cost events (hospitalizations and drug utilization) were collected prospectively. Hospital costs were estimated using Medicare and representative managed care diagnosis-related group reimbursement rates. ACE inhibitor drug costs were estimated using US average wholesale prices. Costs were discounted at 3% annually. Patients in the high-dose lisinopril group had fewer hospitalizations (1.98 vs 2.22, P = .014) and hospital days (18.28 vs 22.22, P = .002), especially heart failure hospitalizations (0.64 vs 0.80, P = .006) and heart failure hospital days (6.02 vs 7.45, P = .028) compared with the low-dose group. The high-dose lisinopril group also had lower heart failure hospital costs (dollars 5114 vs dollars 6361, P = .006) but higher ACE inhibitor drug costs (dollars 1368 vs dollars 855, P = .0001). Total hospital and drug costs were similar between high- and low-dose lisinopril groups (mean difference dollars -875, 95% CI dollars -2613 to dollars 884). Sensitivity analyses confirmed these findings. Cost savings from fewer heart failure hospitalizations offset higher ACE inhibitor costs in the high-dose group. The improved clinical outcomes were achieved without increased treatment costs.The American journal of managed care 06/2003; 9(6):417-24. · 2.12 Impact Factor
Article: Economics of chronic heart failure.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Chronic heart failure (CHF) is now recognized as a major and escalating public health problem. The costs of this syndrome, both in economic and personal terms, are considerable. The prevalence of CHF is 1-2% and appears to be increasing, in part because of ageing of the population. Economic analyses of CHF should include both direct and indirect costs of care. Healthcare expenditure on CHF in developed countries consumes 1-2% of the total health care budget. The cost of hospitalization represents the greatest proportion of total expenditure. Optimization of drug therapy represents the most effective way of reducing costs. Recent economic analyses in the Netherlands and Sweden suggest the costs of care are rising.European Journal of Heart Failure 07/2001; 3(3):283-91. · 5.25 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Heart failure is a common condition that carries a high burden of mortality and morbidity. Several randomised trials have evaluated the effects of beta blockers in heart failure. This paper gives a systematic overview of published randomised trials of beta blockers in heart failure using standard methods. In all, 22 randomised controlled trials were identified with a total of 10480 patients, and an average of 11 months of treatment. The average age was 61 years and 4% were female. Most studies excluded patients with severe heart failure. Death rates in patients randomised to receive beta blockers compared to controls were 458/5657 (8.0%) and 635/4951 (12.8%) respectively, odds ratio 0.63, 95% CI 0.55-0.72, P<0.00001. Similar reductions were observed for hospital admissions for worsening heart failure (11.3 vs. 17.1%, respectively, odds ratio 0.63) and for the composite outcome of death or heart-failure hospital admission (19.4 vs. 26.9%, respectively, odds ratio 0.66). These results show that beta blockers reduce the risk of mortality or the need for heart-failure hospital admission by approximately one third. Absolute reductions of 5-6% in event rates were observed over approximately 1 year of treatment period. These important benefits should be implemented as a priority, since treatment with beta blockers is inexpensive and heart failure carries a high risk of death and disability. Further information on the effect of beta blockers in elderly patients and women would be helpful.European Journal of Heart Failure 06/2001; 3(3):351-7. · 5.25 Impact Factor