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Modeling cost/effectiveness of tobacco control programs

Institution: University of California, San Diego
Investigator(s): Robert Kaplan, Ph.D.
Award Cycle: 2002 (Cycle 11) Grant #: 11RT-0243 Award: $129,915
Subject Area: Public Health, Public Policy, and Economics
Award Type: Research Project Awards

Initial Award Abstract
A group of researchers at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) has developed a mathematical model that can be used to estimate the health effects of tobacco use. A component of that model can be used to estimate the number of quality-adjusted life years (QALYs) that might accrue from changes in tobacco consumption. QALYs consider both how long people live and also take into consideration reduced quality of life associated with diseases and disabilities. This project will refine the model and develop it for the evaluation of other tobacco programs. The improved model will better represent how many cigarettes are consumed and how changes in smoking affect how long people live and what diseases and symptoms they experience as a result of smoking.

The model will be used to evaluate three approaches to tobacco control. In the first demonstration we will review studies on the prevention of smoking for adolescents. The second demonstration will consider the cost/effectiveness of smoking cessation programs in managed care. The third demonstration will evaluate the health impact of tobacco excise tax. This will be an extension of our previous work, but the new analysis will uses the more sophisticated model of health outcome. The validated model will be made available to other investigators so that appropriate cost/effectiveness analyses of tobacco interventions can be completed.

The project will benefit TRDRP efforts by allowing the cost/effectiveness of tobacco prevention, control, and treatment programs to be evaluated in the same way as other medical and healthcare programs that compete for the same resources.