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The cost-effectiveness of tailored, postal feedback on general practitioners' prescribing of pharmacotherapies for alcohol dependence
journal contributionposted on 2018-10-31, 00:00 authored by HJ Navarro, A Shakeshaft, Christopher DoranChristopher Doran, DJ Petrie
Aims: The aims of this study were to conduct a randomised controlled trial to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of tailored, postal feedback on general practitioners' (GPs) prescribing of acamprosate and naltrexone for alcohol dependence relative to current practice and its impact on alcohol dependence morbidity. Methods: Rural communities in New South Wales, Australia, were randomised into experimental (N= 10) and control (N= 10) communities. Tailored feedback on their prescribing of alcohol pharmacotherapies was mailed to GPs from the experimental communities (N= 115). Segmented regression analysis was used to examine within and between group changes in prescribing and alcohol dependence hospitalisation rates compared to the control communities. Incremental cost-effectiveness ratios (ICERs) were estimated per additional prescription of pharmacotherapies and per alcohol dependence hospitalisation(s) averted. Results: Post-intervention changes, relative to the control communities, in GPs' prescribing rate trends in the experimental communities significantly increased for acamprosate (β= 0.24, 95% CI: 0.13-0.35, p < . 0.001), and significantly decreased for naltrexone (β= -0.12, 95% CI: -0.17 to -0.06) per quarter. Quarterly hospitalisation trend rates for alcohol dependence, as principal diagnosis, significantly decreased (β= -0.07, 95% C I: -0.13 to -0.01, p < . 0.05), compared to control communities. The median ICER per quarterly hospitalisation(s) averted due to intervention was Dominant (Dominant - $12,750). Conclusion: Postal, tailored feedback to GPs on their prescribing of acamprosate and naltrexone for alcohol dependence was a cost-effective intervention, in rural communities of NSW, to increase the overall prescribing of pharmacotherapies with a plausible effect on incidence reduction of hospitalisations for alcohol dependence as principal diagnosis. © 2012 Elsevier Ireland Ltd.