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Korean Journal of Preventive Medicine 1996;29(2): 347-358.
Cost-Benefit Analysis of Back School Program for Occupational Low Back pain Patients.
Yeong Su Ju, Mi Na Ha, Sang Hwan Han, Ho Jang Kwon, Soo Hun Cho, Chang Yup Kim, Sun Min Kim
Although occupational low back pain accounts for 20~40% of all occupational illness and injury, there are limited numbers of studies regarding the effectiveness of back school program. The objective of this study was to evaluate the economic benefit of back school program for early return to work of occupational low back pain patients in the current occupational injury compensation and management system. The cost-benefit analysis in this study was conducted to evaluate the relative magnitude of benefit to cost. The total cost was estimated by calculating the value of components in back school program according to governmental budget protocol. The back school program was consisted of three major approaches, pain center, work-hardening program and functional restoration program and each of components had various facilities and experts. The total amount of cost was estimated as 250,866,220 won per year. The most promising type of back school program were quite intensive (a 3 to 5-week stay in a specialized center), therefore, if we adopted the 5-week stay course, 10 courses could be held in a year. Following to the medical act, 20 patients per doctor could participate in a each course, ie, total 200 patients in a year. As a result, we could estimate the cost of 1,254,331 won a patient. we estimated the benefit by using data of a few local labor offices about average medical treatment beneficiary and off-duty beneficiary of 46 occupational low back pain patients in 1994. Ullman and Larsson(1977) mentioned that the group of chronic low back pain patients who participated in back school program needed less time to recover by 48.4% of beneficiary duration. And in the trying to estimate the benefit, we asked 10 rehabilitation board certificate doctors about reduction proportion of treatment cost by introducing back school program. The answered reduction proportions were in the range of 30~45%, average 39%. As a final result, we could see that the introduction of back school program in treatment of chronic occupational low back pain patients could produce the benefit to cost ratio as 3.90 and 6.28. And we could conclude that the introduction of back school program was beneficial to current occupational injury compensation and management system.
Key words: cost-benefit analysis(CBA); back school program; occupational low back pain; benefit-cost ratio
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