A Cost-Effectiveness Analysis of a Randomized Control Trial of a Tailored, Multifactorial Program to Prevent Falls Among the Community-Dwelling Elderly.



To perform a cost-effectiveness analysis of a multifactorial, tailored intervention to reduce falls among a heterogeneous group of high-risk elderly people.


Randomized control trial.




Adults aged at least 65 years (N=354) seen at the emergency department (ED) for a fall or fall-related injury and discharged home.


The intervention group received a tailored program of physical therapy focused on progressive training in strength, balance, and gait for a period of 3 months. They also received screening and referrals for low vision, polypharmacy, and environmental hazards. The Short Physical Performance Battery (SPPB) test was assessed at regular intervals to allocate participants into either a home-based or group center-based program. The control group received usual care prescribed by a physician and educational materials on falls prevention.

Main outcome measures

The incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER) over the 9-month study period based on intervention costs and utility in terms of quality-adjusted life years (QALYs) calculated from EuroQol-5D scores.


The ICER was 120,667 Singapore dollars (S$) per QALY gained (S$362/0.003 QALYs), above benchmark values (S$70,000). However, the intervention was more effective and cost-saving among those with SPPB scores of greater than 6 at baseline, higher cognitive function, better vision and no more than 1 fall in the preceding 6 months. The intervention was also cost-effective among those with 0-1 critical comorbidities (S$22,646/QALY).


The intervention was, overall, not cost-effective, compared to usual care. However, the program was cost-effective among healthier subgroups, and even potentially cost-saving among individuals with sufficient reserve to benefit.





Published Version (Please cite this version)


Publication Info

Matchar, David B, Kirsten Eom, Pamela W Duncan, Mina Lee, Rita Sim, Nirmali R Sivapragasam, Christopher T Lien, Marcus Eng Hock Ong, et al. (2019). A Cost-Effectiveness Analysis of a Randomized Control Trial of a Tailored, Multifactorial Program to Prevent Falls Among the Community-Dwelling Elderly. Archives of physical medicine and rehabilitation, 100(1). pp. 1–8. 10.1016/j.apmr.2018.07.434 Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/22790.

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David Bruce Matchar

Professor of Medicine

My research relates to clinical practice improvement - from the development of clinical policies to their implementation in real world clinical settings. Most recently my major content focus has been cerebrovascular disease. Other major clinical areas in which I work include the range of disabling neurological conditions, cardiovascular disease, and cancer prevention.
Notable features of my work are: (1) reliance on analytic strategies such as meta-analysis, simulation, decision analysis and cost-effectiveness analysis; (2) a balancing of methodological rigor the needs of medical professionals; and (3) dependence on interdisciplinary groups of experts.
This approach is best illustrated by the Stroke Prevention Patient Outcome Research Team (PORT), for which I served as principal investigator. Funded by the AHCPR, the PORT involved 35 investigators at 13 institutions. The Stroke PORT has been highly productive and has led to a stroke prevention project funded as a public/private partnership by the AHCPR and DuPont Pharma, the Managing Anticoagulation Services Trial (MAST). MAST is a practice improvement trial in 6 managed care organizations, focussing on optimizing anticoagulation for individuals with atrial fibrillation.
I serve as consultant in the general area of analytic strategies for clinical policy development, as well as for specific projects related to stroke (e.g., acute stroke treatment, management of atrial fibrillation, and use of carotid endarterectomy.) I have worked with AHCPR (now AHRQ), ACP, AHA, AAN, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, NSA, WHO, and several pharmaceutical companies.
Key Words: clinical policy, disease management, stroke, decision analysis, clinical guidelines

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