Background: Comorbidities in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) are associated with increased medical costs and risk of exacerbations. This study compared COPD-related medical costs and exacerbations in high-cost, high-comorbidity patients with COPD receiving initial maintenance treatment (IMT) with umeclidinium/vilanterol (UMEC/VI) versus fluticasone propionate/salmeterol (FP/SAL), budesonide/formoterol (B/F), or tiotropium (TIO). Methods: This retrospective, matched cohort study identified patients from Optum’s de-identified Clinformatics Data Mart database who initiated UMEC/VI, FP/SAL, B/F, or TIO between January 1, 2014 and December 31, 2018 (index date defined as date of the first fill). Eligibility criteria included age ≥40 years at index, ≥1 pre-index COPD diagnosis, no pre-index asthma diagnosis, 12 months of continuous insurance coverage pre-index, and high pre-index costs (≥80th percentile of IMT population) and comorbidities (Quan-Charlson comorbidity index ≥3). Propensity score matching was used to control for potential confounders. On-treatment COPD-related medical costs (primary endpoint) and exacerbations were evaluated. Results: Matched cohorts were well balanced on baseline characteristics (UMEC/VI vs FP/SAL: n=1194 each; UMEC/VI vs B/F: n=1441 each; UMEC/VI vs TIO: n=1277 each). Patients receiving UMEC/VI had significantly lower COPD-related medical costs versus FP/SAL (difference: $6587 per patient per year; P=0.048), and numerically lower costs versus B/F and TIO. Patients initiating UMEC/VI had significantly lower risk of COPD-related severe exacerbation versus FP/SAL (hazard ratio [95% CI]: 0.78 [0.62, 0.98]; P=0.032), B/F (0.77 [0.63, 0.95]; P=0.016), and TIO (0.79 [0.64, 0.98]; P=0.028). The rate of COPD-related severe exacerbations was significantly lower with UMEC/VI versus FP/SAL (rate ratio [95% CI]: 0.73 [0.59, 0.91]; P=0.008) and B/F (0.73 [0.59, 0.93]; P=0.012), and numerically lower versus TIO (0.83 [0.68, 1.04]; P=0.080). Conclusion: These findings suggest that high-cost, high-comorbidity patients with COPD receiving UMEC/VI compared with FP/SAL, B/F, and TIO as IMT may have lower medical costs and exacerbation risk.
- Medical costs
- Severe exacerbations
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
- Health Policy
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health