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Clin Rehabil. 2015 Jan;29(1):30-41. doi: 10.1177/0269215514537656. Epub 2014 Jun 18.

Cost analysis of the Communication and Low Mood (CALM) randomised trial of behavioural therapy for stroke patients with aphasia.

Author information

  • 1Swansea Centre for Health Economics, Swansea University, UK.
  • 2Division of Rehabilitation and Ageing, University of Nottingham, UK
  • 3Division of Rehabilitation and Ageing, University of Nottingham, UK.



To evaluate the cost effectiveness of a behavioural therapy intervention shown to be clinically effective in comparison with usual care for stroke patients with aphasia.


Randomised controlled trial with comparison of costs and calculation of incremental cost effectiveness ratio.




Participants identified as having low mood on either the Visual Analog Mood Scale sad item (≥50) or Stroke Aphasic Depression Questionnaire Hospital version 21 (SADQH21) (≥6) were recruited.


Participants were randomly allocated to behavioural therapy or usual care using internet-based randomisation generated in advance of the study by a clinical trials unit.


Outcomes were assessed at six months after randomisation, blind to group allocation. The costs were assessed from a service use questionnaire. Effectiveness was defined as the change in SADQH21 scores and a cost-effectiveness analysis was performed comparing the behavioural group with the usual care control group. The cost analysis was undertaken from the perspective of the UK NHS and Social Services.


The greatest difference was in home help costs where there was a saving of £56.20 in the intervention group compared to an increase of £61.40 in the control group. At six months the SADQH21 score for the intervention group was 17.3 compared to the control group value of 20.4. This resulted in a mean increase of 0.7 in the control group, compared to a mean significant different decrease of 6 in the intervention group (P = 0.003). The Incremental Cost-Effectiveness Ratio indicated that the cost per point reduction on the SADQH21 was £263.


Overall the behavioural therapy was found to improve mood and resulted in some encouraging savings in resource utilisation over the six months follow-up.

© The Author(s) 2014.


Aphasia; clinical evaluation; cognitive impairment; economic evaluation; health status

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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