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Earlier Provision of Gastric Bypass Surgery in Canada Enhances Surgical Benefit and Leads to Cost and Comorbidity Reduction.


ABSTRACT: Background: Effective provision of bariatric surgery for patients with obesity may be impeded by concerns of payers regarding costs or perceptions of patients who drop out of surgical programs after referral. Estimates of the cost and comorbidity impact of these inefficiencies in gastric bypass surgery in Canada are lacking but would aid in informing healthcare investment and resource allocation. Objectives: To estimate total and relative public payer costs for surgery and comorbidities (diabetes, hypertension, and dyslipidemia) in a bariatric surgery population. Methods: A decision analytic model for a 100-patient cohort in Canada (91% female, mean body mass index 49.2 kg/m2, 50% diabetes, 66% hypertension, 59% dyslipidemia). Costs include surgery, surgical complications, and comorbidities over the 10-year post-referral period. Results are calculated as medians and 95% credibility intervals (CrIs) for a pathway with surgery at 1 year ("improved") compared with surgery at 3.5 years ("standard"). Sensitivity analyses were performed to test independent contributions to results of shorter wait time, better post-surgical weight loss, and randomly sampled cohort demographics. Results: Compared to standard care, the improved path was associated with reduction in patient-years of treatment for each of the three comorbidities, corresponding to a reduction of $1.1 (0.68-1.6) million, or 34% (26-41%) of total costs. Comorbidity treatment costs were 9.0- and 4.7-fold greater than surgical costs for the standard and improved pathways, respectively. Relative to non-surgical bariatric care, earlier surgery was associated with earlier return on surgical investment and 2-fold reduction in risk of prevalence of each comorbidity compared to delayed surgery. Conclusions: Comorbidity costs represent a greater burden to payers than the costs of gastric bypass surgery. Investments may be worthwhile to reduce wait times and dropout rates and improve post-surgical weight loss outcomes to save overall costs and reduce patient comorbidity prevalence.

SUBMITTER: Davis JA 

PROVIDER: S-EPMC7554569 | BioStudies | 2020-01-01

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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