16/04/24 ERA4TB – A systematic review of economic evaluations of pharmacological treatments for active tuberculosis

Abstract: The continuing spread of tuberculosis (TB) worldwide, especially drug-resistant TB, poses a major challenge to healthcare systems globally. Addressing this requires appraising the cost effectiveness of existing pharmacological interventions against TB to identify key drivers of cost effectiveness and value and guide pharmaceutical innovation and novel drug regimen development. Studies were identified from a search of six database: MEDLINE MEDLINE-In Process, MEDLINE Epub Ahead of Print, EMBASE, Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, and Econlit in July 2022. Two reviewers independently assessed all identified studies and reports using pre-defined inclusion/exclusion criteria. Study methodological quality was assessed, data were extracted in standard tables, and results were narratively synthesized. Overall, 991 studies and 53 HTA reports were identified with 20 studies and 3 HTA reports meeting the inclusion criteria. Quality assessment of the 20 studies identified 4 with minor limitations, while the remainder were assessed as having potentially or very serious limitations. Sixteen studies conducted cost-utility analyses, 6 conducted cost-effectiveness analyses, and 2 conducted cost-comparison analyses with some studies performing multiple analyses. The majority (n = 16) were model-based. Eleven studies analyzed the cost-effectiveness of bedaquiline, 6 compared shorter to longer/standard duration regimens, 2 assessed ethambutol, and 1 assessed delamanid. Key drivers of cost effectiveness were drug costs, the number of TB cases, the portion of cases with sputum culture conversion, treatment delivery costs, and treatment efficacy. Common value elements considered included adverse events, drug resistance, and improving treatment adherence. Our results suggest that out of the pharmacological treatments assessed, bedaquiline is likely a cost-effective addition to existing treatment regimens/background treatment regimens, while ethambutol is not likely to be. Newer shorter regimens, even if more costly, seem to be more cost-effective compared to longer regimens. These results illustrate the limited number of novel cost-effective pharmacological interventions and highlight a need to develop new drugs/regimens against TB to overcome resistance, taking into account the key drivers of cost effectiveness and other value attributes identified from this review.

Authors: Nagar S., Nicholss D., Dawoud D.

Source: Frontiers in Public Health, Health Economics

DOI: https://doi.org/10.3389/fpubh.2024.1201512