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Title: Health care cost savings from Australian Poisons Information Centre advice for low risk exposure calls: SNAPSHOT 2.
Austin Authors: Huynh, Alanna;Cairns, Rose;Brown, Jared A;Jan, Stephen;Robinson, Jeffrey;Lynch, Ann-Maree;Wylie, Carol;Buckley, Nicholas A;Dawson, Andrew H
Affiliation: NSW Poisons Information Centre, The Children's Hospital at Westmead, Sydney, Australia
School of Medical Sciences, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia
Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia
The George Institute for Global Health, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia
Victorian Poisons Information Centre, Austin Health, Heidelberg, Victoria, Australia
Western Australian Poisons Information Centre, Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital, Perth, Australia
Queensland Poisons Information Centre, Lady Cilento Children's Hospital, Brisbane, Australia
School of Medical Sciences, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia
Issue Date: Jul-2020 2019-11-13
Publication information: Clinical toxicology (Philadelphia, Pa.) 2020; 58(7): 752-757
Abstract: Introduction: To estimate cost savings from the Australian Poisons Information Centres (PIC) through reductions in unnecessary health resources following unintentional low toxicity poisonings.Methods: Two telephone surveys were conducted. The first to PIC callers over a one-week period about unintentional exposures where the callers' alternate course of action in the hypothetical situation in which the PIC did not exist was questioned. The second survey to determine the proportion of callers followed PIC advice. We estimated cost savings associated with instances where individuals acted on advice not to present to hospital, when they indicated they would have otherwise as well as savings from preventing unnecessarily utilisation of medical resources. Database records of unintentional poisonings from all Australian PICs for 2017 were used.Results: A total of 958 consecutive callers were surveyed. PIC advised 91% of callers to stay at home, remaining callers were referred to hospital (5%), to their GP (3%) or given other recommended management advice (1%). PIC advice was followed by 97.6% of callers. In PIC absence, 22% of callers who were advised to stay home would have presented to hospital (3% via ambulance), 8% would visit their General Practitioner (GP) and only 9% would stay at home. In 2017, PICs were called about 94,913 unintentional poisonings; and PICs generated at least $10.1¬†million in annual savings.Conclusion: In 2017, PICs provided at least a three-fold return on investment for every dollar invested, demonstrating that PICs are a highly cost effective service.
DOI: 10.1080/15563650.2019.1686513
ORCID: 0000-0002-6380-8344
PubMed URL: 31718323
Type: Journal Article
Subjects: Australian Poisons Centre
cost effectiveness
health economics
health resource utilisation
Appears in Collections:Journal articles

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