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Year : 2013  |  Volume : 20  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 218-222

Cost of epilepsy care in a Nigerian tertiary hospital

1 Department of Medicine, University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital, Ilorin, Kwara State, Nigeria
2 Department of Medicine, LAUTECH, Osogbo, Osun State, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Dr. E O Sanya
PO Box 5314 Ilorin, Kwara State
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

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Aims and Objectives : The economic impact of epilepsy is enormous in terms of use of health care resources and loss of productivity. There is presently scanty data on economic impact of epilepsy in Nigeria,which necessitated this study. Subjects and Methods : This cross-sectional study is on epilepsy patients age e"16years who attended Neurology clinic at UITH Ilorin. Data collected included clinical characteristics, utilisation of resources and cost of care. Direct medical costs included recurring costs like consultation, hospitalisation, medication and investigation fees. Indirect costs were number of days lost due to seizure attack and travelling to clinic by patients and relatives. Results: Sixty-five patients (32 males, 33 females) participated in the study with age range of 16 to 74 years and mean (SD) of 35΁17years. Total clinic attendance was 314 days and 53days were spent on admission. Close to 25 % of patients resided outside Ilorin metropolis and distance traveled to attend clinic varied from 4 to 200km (mean=47΁30.6km). The total annual cost per patient was 41,878 ($279.2 USD). It consisted of direct cost [DC] of 33,616 (80%) and indirect cost [IC] of 8262 (20%). The three leading consumptive items in DC were: antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) - 24,138, investigations - 5373 and transportation - 2387. Majority (76.9%) of the patients were on carbamazepine. Self-estimated monthly family income varies from 3000 to 200,000 (median of 25,000). Only 23 patients (35.4%) bore the cost of care themselves. Of the IC, lost earnings due to absenteeism from work amounted to 6177. Equivalent of 1 USD was 150 at time of study. Conclusion . AEDs accounted for a significant proportion of TC. Increase in availability of generic drugs could help bring down the cost of care within affordable reach of indigent patients.

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