The economic burden of stroke in Italy. The EcLIPSE Study: Economic Longitudinal Incidence-based Project for Stroke Evaluation
- Cite this article as:
- Gerzeli, S., Tarricone, R., Zolo, P. et al. Neurol Sci (2005) 26: 72. doi:10.1007/s10072-005-0439-0
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Stroke is the second most common cause of death in the world. The aim of this study is to estimate stroke’s direct costs and productivity losses in Italy from a societal perspective and to explain cost variability. A prospective observational multicentre cost of illness study was designed. Four hundred and forty-nine consecutive patients admitted because of acute first-ever stroke in 11 Italian hospitals were enrolled. Costs and outcomes were assessed at patients’ enrolment, and at 3, 6 and 12 months after discharge. Overall, social costs in the first six months following the attack were € 11 600 per patient; 53% of this was health care costs, 39% non-health care costs and the remaining 8% productivity losses. Age, level of disability and type of hospital ward were the most significant predictors of six-month social costs. The acute phase counted for more than 50% of total health care costs, leaving the remaining 50% to the post-acute phase, indicating that follow-up should be on the agenda of policy makers also.