ADVANCES IN THERAPY, vol.38, no.9, pp.4935-4948, 2021 (SCI-Expanded)
Introduction This study aims to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of remdesivir compared to other existing therapies (SoC) in Turkey to treat COVID-19 patients hospitalized with < 94% saturation and low-flow oxygen therapy (LFOT) requirement. Methods We compared remdesivir as the treatment for COVID-19 with the treatments in the Turkish treatment guidelines. Analyses were performed using data from 78 hospitalized COVID-19 patients with SpO(2) < 94% who received LFOT in a tertiary healthcare facility. COVID-19 episode costs were calculated for 78 patients considering the cost of modeled remdesivir treatment in the same group from the payer's perspective. The incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER) per quality-adjusted life-year (QALY) was calculated for remdesivir versus the SoC for the population identified. For Turkey, a reimbursement threshold value between USD 8599 (1 x per capita gross domestic product-GDP) and USD 25.797 (3 x GDP) per QALY was used. Results In the remdesivir arm, the length of hospital stay (LOS) was 3 days shorter than the SOC. The low ventilator requirement in the remdesivir arm was one factor that decreased the QALY disutility value. In patients who were transferred to intensive care unit (ICU) from the ward, the mean LOS was 17.3 days (SD 13.6), and the mean cost of stay was USD 155.3/day (SD 168.0), while in patients who were admitted to ICU at baseline, the mean LOS was 13.1 days (SD 13.7), and the mean cost of stay was USD 207.9/day (SD 133.6). The mean cost of episode per patient was USD 3461.1 (SD 2259.8) in the remdesivir arm and USD 3538.9 (SD 3296.0) in the SOC arm. Incremental QALYs were estimated at 0.174. Remdesivir treatment was determined to be cost saving vs. SoC. Conclusions Remdesivir, which results in shorter LOS and lower rates of intubation requirements in ICU patients than existing therapies, is associated with higher QALYs and lower costs, dominating SoC in patients with SpO(2) < 94% who require oxygen support.