Objectives: To estimate the economic burden of osteoporotic vertebral fracture (VF) from a societal perspective. Methods: From 2002 to 2004, we identified all National Health Insurance claims records for women ≥ 50 years old with a diagnosis of VF. The first 6-months was defined as a "clearance period," such that patients were considered as incident cases if their first claim of fracture was recorded after June 30, 2002. We only included patients with ≥ one claim of a diagnosis of, or prescription for, osteoporosis over 3 years. For each patient, we cumulated the claims amount for the first visit and for the follow-up treatments for 1 year. The hospital charge data from 4 hospitals were investigated to measure the proportion of the non-covered services. Face-to-face interviews were conducted with 106 patients from the 4 study sites to measure the out-of-pocket spending outside of hospitals. Results: During 2.5 years, 131,453 VF patients were identified. The patients had an average of 3.38 visits, 0.40 admissions and 6.36 inpatient days. The per capita cost was 1,909,690 Won: 71.5% for direct medical costs, 20.6% for direct non-medical costs and 7.9% for indirect costs. The per capita cost increased with increasing age: 1,848,078 Won for those aged 50-64, 2,084,846 Won for 65-74, 2,129,530 Won for 75-84and 2,121,492 Won for those above 84. Conclusions: Exploring the economic burden of osteoporotic VF is expected to motivate to adopt effective treatment options for osteoporosis in order to prevent the incidence of fracture and the consequent costs.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health