Cost-Effectiveness of Early Assisted Discharge for COPD Exacerbations in The Netherlands

Lucas M. A. Goossens*, Cecile M. A. Utens, Frank W. J. M. Smeenk, Onno C. P. van Schayck, Monique van Vliet, Walter van Litsenburg, Maria W. Braken, Maureen P. M. H. Rutten-van Molken

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Objectives: Hospital admissions for exacerbations of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease are the main cost drivers of the disease. An alternative is to treat suitable patients at home instead of in the hospital. This article reports on the cost-effectiveness and cost-utility of early assisted discharge in The Netherlands. Methods: In the multicenter randomized controlled Assessment of GOing Home under Early Assisted Discharge trial (n = 139), one group received 7 days of inpatient hospital treatment (HOSP) and one group was discharged after 3 days and treated at home by community nurses for 4 days. Health care resource use, productivity losses, and informal care were recorded in cost questionnaires. Microcosting was performed for inpatient day costs. Results: Seven days after admission, mean change from baseline Clinical Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Questionnaire score was better for HOSP, but not statistically significantly: 0.29 (95% confidence interval [CI] -0.04 to 0.61). The difference in the probability of having a clinically relevant improvement was significant in favor of HOSP: 19.0%-point (95% CI 0.5%-36.3%). After 3 months of follow-up, differences in effectiveness had almost disappeared. The difference in quality-adjusted life-years was 0.0054 (95% CI -0.021 to 0.0095). From a health care perspective, early assisted discharge was cost saving: -(sic)244 (treatment phase, 95% CI -(sic)315 to -(sic)168) and -(sic)168 (3 months, 95% CI -(sic)1253 to 922). Societal perspective: -(sic)65 (treatment phase, 95% CI -(sic)152 to 25) and 908 (3 months, 95% CI -(sic)553 to 2296). The savings per quality-adjusted life-year lost were 31,111 from a health care perspective. From a societal perspective, HOSP was dominant. Conclusions: No clear evidence was found to conclude that either treatment was more effective or less costly.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)517-528
JournalValue in Health
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2013


  • COPD exacerbations
  • cost-effectiveness
  • early assisted discharge
  • hospital-at-home


Dive into the research topics of 'Cost-Effectiveness of Early Assisted Discharge for COPD Exacerbations in The Netherlands'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this