INTRODUCTION: Clinical guidelines recommend surveillance of patients with Barrett's esophagus (BE). However, the surveillance intervals in practice are shorter than policy recommendations. We aimed to determine how this policy-practice gap affects the costs and benefits of BE surveillance. METHODS: We used the Netherlands as an exemplary Western country and simulated a cohort of 60-year-old patients with BE using the Microsimulation Screening Analysis model-esophageal adenocarcinoma (EAC) microsimulation model. We evaluated surveillance according to the Dutch guideline and more intensive surveillance of patients without dysplastic BE and low-grade dysplasia. For each strategy, we computed the quality-adjusted life years (QALYs) gained and costs compared with no surveillance. We also performed a budget impact analysis to estimate the increased costs of BE management in the Netherlands for 2017. RESULTS: Compared with no surveillance, the Dutch guideline incurred an additional &OV0556;5.0 ($5.7) million per 1,000 patients with BE for surveillance and treatment, whereas 57 esophageal adenocarcinoma (EAC) cases (>T1a) were prevented. With intensive and very intensive surveillance strategies for both nondysplastic BE and low-grade dysplasia, the net costs increased by another &OV0556;2.5-5.6 ($2.8-6.5) million while preventing 10-19 more EAC cases and gaining 33-60 more QALYs. On a population level, this amounted to &OV0556;21-47 ($24-54) million (+32%-70%) higher healthcare costs in 2017. DISCUSSION: The policy-practice gap in BE surveillance intervals results in 50%-114% higher net costs for BE management for only 10%-18% increase in QALYs gained, depending on actual intensity of surveillance. Incentives to eliminate this policy-practice gap should be developed to reduce the burden of BE management on patients and healthcare resources.,
American Journal of Gastroenterology
Department of Public Health

Omidvari, A.H, Roumans, C.A.M, Naber, S.K, Kroep, S, Wijnhoven, B.P.L, Gaast, A.V. (Ate van der), … Lansdorp-Vogelaar, I. (2020). The Impact of the Policy-Practice Gap on Costs and Benefits of Barrett's Esophagus Management. American Journal of Gastroenterology, 115(7), 1026–1035. doi:10.14309/ajg.0000000000000578