Cost effectiveness of day and inpatient psychiatric treatment: results of a randomised controlled trial.

Abstract:

OBJECTIVE:To compare direct and indirect costs of day and inpatient treatment of acute psychiatric illness. DESIGN:Randomised controlled trial with outcome and costs assessed over 12 months after the date of admission. SETTING:Teaching hospital in an inner city area. SUBJECTS:179 patients with acute psychiatric illness referred for admission who were suitable for random allocation to day hospital or inpatient treatment. 77 (43%) patients had schizophrenia. INTERVENTIONS:Routine inpatient or day hospital treatment. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:Direct and indirect costs over 12 months, clinical symptoms, social functioning, and burden on relatives over the follow up period. RESULTS:Clinical and social outcomes were similar at 12 months, except that inpatients improved significantly faster than day patients and burden on relatives was significantly less in the day hospital group at one year. Median direct costs to the hospital were 1923 pounds (95% confidence interval 750 pounds to 3174 pounds) per patient less for day hospital treatment than inpatient treatment. Indirect costs were greater for day patients; when these were included, overall day hospital treatment was 2165 pounds cheaper than inpatient treatment (95% confidence interval of median difference 737 pounds to 3593 pounds). Including costs to informants when appropriate meant that day hospital treatment was 1994 pounds per patient cheaper (95% confidence interval 600 pounds to 3543 pounds). CONCLUSIONS:Day patient treatment is cheaper for the 30-40% of potential admissions that can be treated in this way. Carers of day hospital patients may bear additional costs. Carers of all patients with acute psychiatric illness are often themselves severely distressed at the time of admission, but day hospital treatment leads to less burden on carers in the long term.

journal_name

BMJ

authors

Creed F,Mbaya P,Lancashire S,Tomenson B,Williams B,Holme S

doi

10.1136/bmj.314.7091.1381

subject

Has Abstract

pub_date

1997-05-10 00:00:00

pages

1381-5

issue

7091

eissn

0959-8138

issn

1756-1833

journal_volume

314

pub_type

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