Economic impact of an electronic alert system to prevent venous thromboembolism in hospitalized patients.
J Thromb Haemost. 2011 Apr 11;
Authors: Lecumberri R, Panizo E, Gomez-Guiu A, Varea S, García-Quetglas E, Serrano M, García-Mouriz A, Marqués M, Gómez-Outes A, Páramo JA
Background: Prevention of venous thromboembolism (VTE) is a priority to improve safety in hospitalized patients. Worldwide there is a growing concern with the undersuse of appropriate thromboprophylaxis. Computerised decision support improve implementation of thromboprophylaxis and reduce inpatient VTE, but an economic assessment has not been performed yet. Objectives: To evaluate the economic impact of an electronic alert (e-alert) system to prevent VTE in hospitalized patients, after four years operating. Patients/Methods: All hospitalized patients at one single institution during the first semesters of 2005 to 2009 (N=32,280) were included. All cases of VTE developed during hospitalization were followed and direct costs of diagnosis and management collected. Results: e-alerts achieved a maintained reduction of the incidence of in-hospital VTE, OR 0.50 (95% CI, 0.29-0.84), the impact being especially significant in medical patients, OR 0.44 (95% CI, 0.22-0.86). No increase in prophylaxis-related bleeding was observed. In our setting, the mean direct cost (during hospitalization and after discharge) of an in-hospital VTE episode is €7058. Direct costs per single hospitalized patient were reduced after e-alerts from €21.6 to €11.8, while the increased use of thromboprophylaxis and the development of e-alerts meant €3 and €0.35 per patient respectively. Thus, the implementation of e-alerts led to a net cost saving of €6.5 per every hospitalized patient. Should all hospitalized patients in Spain be considered, total yearly savings would approach €30 million. Conclusions: e-alerts are useful and cost-effective tools for thromboprophylaxis strategy in hospitalized patients. Fewer thromboembolic complications and lower costs are achieved by its implementation.
PMID: 21481177 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]