Cost-effectiveness of Project ADAM: A project to prevent sudden cardiac death in high school students

S. Berger*, B. N. Whitstone, S. J. Frisbee, J. T. Miner, A. Dhala, R. G. Pirrallo, L. M. Utech, R. C. Sachdeva

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


Public access defibrillation (PAD) in the adult population is thought to be both efficacious and cost-effective. Similar programs aimed at children and adolescents have not been evaluated for their cost-effectiveness. This study evaluates the potential cost-effectiveness of implementing Project ADAM, a program targeting children and adolescents in high schools in the Milwaukee Public School System. Project ADAM provides education about cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and the warning signs of sudden cardiac death (SCD) and training in the use and placement of automated external defibrillators (AEDs) in high schools. We developed decision analysis models to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of the decision to implement Project ADAM in public high schools in Milwaukee. We examined clinical model and public policy applications. Data on costs included estimates of hospital-based charges derived from a pediatric medical center where a series of patients were treated for SCD, educational programming, and the direct costs of one AED and training for 15 personnel per school. We performed sensitivity analyses to assess the variation in outputs with respect to changes to input data. The main outcome measures were Life years saved and incremental cost-effectiveness ratios. At an arbitrary societal willingness to pay $100,000 per life year saved, the policy to implement Project ADAM in schools is a cost-effective strategy at a threshold of approximately 5 patients over 5 years for the clinical model and approximately 8 patients over 5 years for the public policy model. Implementation of Project ADAM in high schools in the United States is potentially associated with an incremental cost-effectiveness ratio that is favorable.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)660-667
Number of pages8
JournalPediatric cardiology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2004


  • Automated external defibrillators
  • Cardiopulmonary resuscitation
  • Public access defibrillation
  • School-based public access defibrillation
  • Sudden cardiac death

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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