Economic analysis of the implementation of guidelines for type 2 diabetes control developed by Diabetes Poland: what increase in costs is justified by clinical results?
ABSTRACT Diabetes Poland has recently published guidelines for the treatment of type 2 diabetes. Treatment according to these guidelines is more expensive and requires more involvement of the patient than is the case in current clinical practice.
The aim of the study was to assess to what extent the cost of type 2 diabetes treatment according to the Diabetes Poland guidelines may be increased when compared with the cost of the current treatment, so that the introduction of the guidelines remains cost-effective in the Polish setting.
Two hypothetical patients were defined, John and Peter, representing the population of newly diagnosed type 2 diabetic patients. The disease progression was simulated assuming that John is treated according to the current practice and Peter is treated to achieve and maintain the goals defined by Diabetes Poland. The simulation was performed using the CORE model, which has been constructed based on the published scientific evidence and includes more than a dozen of diabetes complications. The model has been widely validated by numerous studies and is broadly used; it enables a reliable estimation of costs and clinical effects associated with diabetes. The parameters of the model were adapted to the Polish conditions. The analysis was conducted in a life-long perspective, discounting of costs/effects was included, and the acceptability threshold was set at 25,511 EUR per quality-adjusted life-year (QALY).
The quality-adjusted life expectancy of John will be 0.3 QALY lower than the life expectancy of Peter. The treatment of diabetic complications will be 400 EUR more expensive in the case of John compared with that of Peter. Assuming the willingness to pay at the level of 7500 EUR/QALY, the cost of diabetes treatment of Peter may be 250 EUR higher than that of John's treatment. For the threshold level of 15,000 EUR/QALY, the difference in cost may be 450 EUR, and for the threshold level of 25,000 EUR/QALY - 725 EUR per year.
Treatment according to the guidelines of Diabetes Poland may be cost-effective provided that the additional costs associated with intensification of therapy will not exceed 725 EUR per year.