The cost trajectory of the diagnostic care pathway for children with suspected genetic disorders.

TitleThe cost trajectory of the diagnostic care pathway for children with suspected genetic disorders.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2019
AuthorsDragojlovic N, van Karnebeek CDM, Ghani A, Genereaux D, Kim E, Birch P, Elliott AM, Friedman JM, Lynd LD
Corporate AuthorsCAUSES Study
JournalGenet Med
Date Published08/2019
ISSN1530-0366
Abstract

PURPOSE: This study describes the cost trajectory of the standard diagnostic care pathway for children with suspected genetic disorders in British Columbia, Canada.

METHODS: Average annual per-patient costs were estimated using medical records review and a caregiver survey for a cohort of 498 children referred to BC Children's and Women's Hospitals (C&W) with unexplained intellectual disability (the TIDE-BC study) and families enrolled in the CAUSES study, which offered diagnostic genome-wide sequencing (GWS; exome and genome sequencing) to 500 families of children with suspected genetic disorders.

RESULTS: Direct costs peaked in the first year of patients' diagnostic odyssey, with an average of C$2257 per patient (95% confidence interval [CI] C$2074, C$2441) for diagnostic testing and C$631 (95% CI C$543, C$727) for specialist consultations at C&W. In subsequent years, direct costs accrued at a constant rate, with an estimated annual per-patient cost of C$511 (95% CI C$473, C$551) for diagnostic testing and C$334 (95% CI C$295, C$369) for consultations at C&W. Travel costs and caregiver productivity loss associated with attending diagnosis-related physician appointments averaged C$1907/family/year.

CONCLUSIONS: The continuing long-term accrual of costs by undiagnosed patients suggests that economic evaluations of diagnostic GWS services should use longer time horizons than have typically been used.

DOI10.1038/s41436-019-0635-6
Alternate JournalGenet. Med.
PubMed ID31462755