, Volume 13, Issue 1, pp 81-91,
Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.
Date: 16 Nov 2010

The cost of multiple sclerosis in Norway

Abstract

Health economic aspects have been increasingly important during introduction of new treatments for multiple sclerosis. As a partial response for Norway, a cost-of-illness study was carried out to estimate the yearly cost of the illness to society and relate costs and patients’ quality of life to illness severity. Estimated cost to society was Euro 439 million in 2002 exclusive of the cost of reduced quality of life. The cost per patient was close to Euro 65,000. Account taken of methodological differences, the results compare to results for Sweden, Norway’s closest neighboring country. The illness reduced patients’ quality of life with 0.26. More patients were early retired because of their MS in Norway than in any of nine other European countries comprised by a recent European study, illustrating a liberal practice in Norway. The Norwegian cost of unpaid assistance was almost identical to the Swedish cost that was the lowest found across the countries in the European study. When related to illness severity, the cost per patient increased, and the patients’ experienced quality of life decreased with increasing EDSS levels in line with what has been found for other countries. Cost-of-MS studies have been carried out for a number of countries. Together they contribute to our understanding of the economic consequences of multiple sclerosis and, if their results are related to illness severity, also provide valuable information for further economic analyses of treatment and medication. Our study adds to this.