Costs and Sustainability of a Behavioral Intervention for Urinary Incontinence Prevention

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Abstract

Introduction

Many women choose behavioral interventions as first line treatment for urinary incontinence. We developed a 20-minute abbreviated video, which proved to be similar to a 2-hour in-person class in a randomized trial. This study examines economic end points for the 20-minute video relative to the 2-hour class.

Methods

We randomized 332 participants to the 2-hour class and 315 to the 20-minute video. We estimated the cost for the 2-hour class, the 20-minute video and followup health care utilization. Participants were followed for 3, 12 and 24 months, and asked about health care utilization, quality of life and lost productivity. To measure perceived value, we queried each participant regarding willingness to pay. Regression analysis was used for statistical comparisons.

Results

The estimated per participant cost for a 2-hour class was $38, which was more than the marginal cost of the video ($0). We found no significant differences between the treatment groups at each followup for quality of life, lost productivity or health care utilization. Women were willing to pay $26, $21 and $30 for a copy of the DVD, video on the Web and in-person class, respectively, all of which were less than the average cost of the in-person class ($38).

Conclusions

Poor adherence remains a challenge for many behavioral interventions designed to prevent urinary incontinence. The 20-minute video is less expensive than the 2-hour class and is equally effective. Distributing the video on the Internet will improve access and will be easier to sustain than in-person classes.

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