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Chest. 2006 Mar;129(3):581-93.

Outcomes of a Web-based patient education program for asthmatic children and adolescents.

Author information

  • 1GlaxoSmithKline GmbH & Co., Munich, Germany. Runge.Claus@web.de

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Asthma is the most common chronic disease among children in Germany. Approaches to reduce the burden of asthma include patient education to improve self-management skills.

STUDY OBJECTIVES:

We determined whether a continuous Internet-based education program (IEP) as an add-on to a standardized patient management program (SPMP) improves health outcomes of asthma patients at a favorable benefit-cost ratio.

PATIENTS AND METHODS:

A total of 438 asthmatic patients aged 8 to 16 years in 36 study centers were enrolled during a 6-month period. We performed a prospective cost-benefit analysis alongside a nonrandomized trial. At baseline and at 6 months and 12 months, health service utilization data were collected.

INTERVENTIONS:

Study participants were assigned to a control group and two intervention groups. Patients in both intervention groups participated in an SPMP. Additionally, patients in one intervention group received the IEP.

RESULTS:

Utilization of various health-care services decreased significantly in both intervention groups. From a payer perspective, the benefit-cost ratio of the traditional education program was 0.55. Adding the IEP improved the ratio (0.79). For patients with moderate or severe asthma, the benefit-cost ratios were 1.07 and 1.42 (with IEP), respectively.

CONCLUSIONS:

The IEP offers the potential to decrease the burden of disease and to realize incremental morbidity cost savings. Subgroup analysis demonstrated that within 1 year, the savings exceed the intervention costs in patients with moderate or severe asthma.

PMID:
16537855
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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