Cost-Benefit Estimation of Cadaveric Kidney Transplantation, the Case of a Developing Country
In this paper we estimate cost savings for the health-care system and quality of life improvement for patients from an increase in the number of kidney transplants in Chile. To do so, we compare the present value of dialysis and transplantation costs and quality of life in a 20-year horizon. We used Markov models and, in addition, introduce some degree of uncertainty in the value of some of the parameters that build up the model and, using Montecarlo simulations, estimate confidence intervals for our results. Our estimates suggest that an additional kidney transplant has an expected savings value of US$ 28,000 for the health-care system. If quality of life improvement is also considered, expected savings rise to US$ 102,000. These results imply that, increasing donation rate by one donor per million people would turn into an estimated cost saving of US$ 827,000 per year, or near US$ 3 million per year if the effect in the quality of life is considered. These results demonstrate that kidney transplants, along with a better quality of life for patients are a cost saving decision in developing countries.
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