, Volume 4, Issue 1, pp 14–30

The Economic Costs of Asthma

A Review and Conceptual Model
  • Kevin B. Weiss
  • Sean D. Sullivan
Review Article

DOI: 10.2165/00019053-199304010-00004

Cite this article as:
Weiss, K.B. & Sullivan, S.D. Pharmacoeconomics (1993) 4: 14. doi:10.2165/00019053-199304010-00004


There is a growing international concern about increasing asthma morbidity. While much is known about asthma morbidity, there are few available data on the economic burden of this condition, particularly in underdeveloped countries. In the absence of data on social costs, it is not possible to develop rational approaches to policies regarding resource allocation to reduce morbidity. The purpose of this article is to provide a review of the available literature on the social costs of illness for asthma. In light of this literature, we propose a conceptual model that links asthma morbidity to the social opportunity costs of the disease. We then delineate a framework, based on the proposed model, that can be used to conceptualise and evaluate the relative impact of alternative asthma intervention strategies. Based upon proposed analyses using this model, we believe that it would be possible to compare how various intervention strategies are likely to affect asthma costs and morbidity, thus providing a means for a more rational approach to healthcare policies regarding societal resource allocation for asthma.

Copyright information

© Adis International Limited 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kevin B. Weiss
    • 1
  • Sean D. Sullivan
    • 2
  1. 1.Departments of Health Care Sciences and Medicine and the Center for Health Policy ResearchThe George Washington UniversityUSA
  2. 2.Departments of Pharmacy and Health Services, Schools of Pharmacy and Public Health and Community Medicine, and Program in Pharmacoepidemiology and Drug PolicyUniversity of WashingtonSeattleUSA