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Drugs, antipsychotic, schizophrenia, cost effectiveness, database
Olanzapine and risperidone are atypical antipsychotics exhibiting different pharmacological properties
that are likely to translate into differences in outcomes, tolerability and safety. As well, their acquisition cost differs. These differences may impact their cost-effectiveness.
To estimate the incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER) of olanzapine and risperidone in an outpatient population.
We carried out a cost-effectiveness analysis based on resource utilization data gathered from Quebec’s provincial health insurance board databases. Patients previously diagnosed with schizophrenia who
received a first prescription of olanzapine or risperidone between 1 January 1997 and 31 August 1999 were followed for 365 days. Absence of hospitalization for mental illness served as the clinical indicator of effectiveness. Direct health care costs for mental illness were considered. Adjusted ICERs were calculated, and their 95% confidence intervals (CI) were assessed using a non-parametric bootstrap.
A total of 6,334 patients were included in the analysis. The ICER for olanzapine was (CA$) 86,918
(95%CI, 27,709 to 237,040) per additional effective treatment per year, among patien ts hospitalized prior to their treatment. Among those who were not hospitalized prior to their treatment, olanzapine was dominated (95%CI, CA$1.7M to dominated).
Results suggest that, in this population, direct mental health care costs could be minimized by using
risperidone instead of olanzapine as the initial treatment.
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