Background: Current guidelines recommend the use of pH monitoring to confirm the diagnosis of acid reflux in patients with a normal endoscopy. This analysis evaluated the financial impact of pH monitoring with the wireless pH capsule on a managed care organization (MCO) in the United States. Methods: A decision model was constructed to project total 1-year costs to manage GERD symptoms with and without the adoption of wireless pH capsules in a hypothetical MCO with 10 000 eligible adult enrollees, of whom 600 presented with GERD-like symptoms. Costs of GERD diagnosis, treatment, and symptom management for those in whom a GERD diagnosis was ruled out by pH monitoring were assessed. The incremental per-member-per-month (PMPM) and per-treated-member-per-month (PTMPM) costs were the primary outcomes. Data sources included literature, expert input, and standardized fee schedules. Results: An increase of 10 percentage points in the use of pH monitoring with wireless pH capsules yielded incremental PMPM and PTMPM costs of $0.029 and $0.481, respectively. The costs of proton pump inhibitor (PPI) therapy to the plan dropped to $236363 from $238 086, while increases were observed in pH monitoring (from $16 739 to $21973) and non-GERD therapy costs (from $1392 to $1740). The results were sensitive to the percentage of patients requiring repeat endoscopy before wireless pH monitoring and the cost of PPIs. Conclusions: Timely and increased use of pH monitoring as recommended in published guidelines leads to less unnecessary use of PPIs with a modest budgetary impact on health plans.
- Budget impact model
- Gastro-esophageal reflux disease
- pH monitoring
ASJC Scopus subject areas