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Centralising and optimising decentralised stroke care systems: A simulation study on short-term costs and effects

Lahr, M. M. H., van der Zee, D-J., Luijckx, G-J., Vroomen, P. C. A. J. & Buskens, E., 10-Jan-2017, In : BMC Medical Research Methodology. 17, 5, 12 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Background: Centralisation of thrombolysis may offer substantial benefits. The aim of this study was to assess short term costs and effects of centralisation of thrombolysis and optimised care in a decentralised system.

Methods: Using simulation modelling, three scenarios to improve decentralised settings in the North of Netherlands were compared from the perspective of the policy maker and compared to current decentralised care: (1) improving stroke care at nine separate hospitals, (2) centralising and improving thrombolysis treatment to four, and (3) two hospitals. Outcomes were annual mean and incremental costs per patient up to the treatment with thrombolysis, incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (iCER) per 1% increase in thrombolysis rate, and the proportion treated with thrombolysis.

Results: Compared to current decentralised care, improving stroke care at individual community hospitals led to mean annual costs per patient of $ US 1,834 (95% CI, 1,823-1,843) whereas centralising to four and two hospitals led to $ US 1,462 (95% CI, 1,451-1,473) and $ US 1,317 (95% CI, 1,306-1,328), respectively (P <0.001). The iCER of improving community hospitals was $ US 113 (95% CI, 91-150) and $ US 71 (95% CI, 59-94), $ US 56 (95% CI, 44-74) when centralising to four and two hospitals, respectively. Thrombolysis rates decreased from 22.4 to 21.8% and 21.2% (P = 0.120 and P = 0.001) in case of increasing centralisation.

Conclusions: Centralising thrombolysis substantially lowers mean annual costs per patient compared to raising stroke care at community hospitals simultaneously. Small, but negative effects on thrombolysis rates may be expected.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages12
JournalBMC Medical Research Methodology
Volume17
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 10-Jan-2017

    Keywords

  • Stroke, Simulation models, Organisational model, Costs, Thrombolysis, TISSUE-PLASMINOGEN ACTIVATOR, ACUTE ISCHEMIC-STROKE, UNITED-STATES, POOLED ANALYSIS, THROMBOLYSIS, CENTERS, TRIALS, IMPLEMENTATION, INFARCTION, ALTEPLASE

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