Master's Culminating Experience
The Metabolic Syndrome poses an important public health threat to the U.S. health care delivery system. Disparate access to quality health care makes African Americans (blacks) especially susceptible to the adverse effects of MS. Although direct evidence suggests that early treatment of MS risk factors saves lives, no study to date has compared the cost effectiveness of such measures in blacks and the general population. Interventions that promote early treatment of MS risk factors may improve public health but could also lead to excess costs that are ultimately borne by society. The objective of this study was to assess the value of early treatment of MS risk factors in blacks and the general population. A cost effectiveness analysis was carried out using a Markov decision model to compare early treatment and late treatment of MS risk factors in blacks and the general population. The main outcome measure was the incremental cost per Quality Adjusted Life Year (QALY). With the exception of early treatment of hyperlipidemia in blacks ($ 187,462/QALY), early treatment of individual MS risk factors at age 30 was found to be cost effective (<$27,000/QALY) for both blacks and the general population. With the exception of treatment of hyperlipidemia, early treatment strategies targeted at blacks were found to be more cost effective than those targeted towards the general population. Sensitivity analyses indicated that age and cost of treatment were the most influential factors in the model. The cost effectiveness of early treatment of MS risk factors in blacks and the general population compares favorably with similar health care interventions. The results support a growing body of literature that indicates the cost effectiveness of providing preventative services to apparently healthy individuals.
Tasosa, J. T.
(2004). A Comparative Evaluation of the Cost Effectiveness of Treating the Metabolic Syndrome in African Americans and the General Population. .