Comparison of surgical payer costs and implication on the healthcare expenses between laparoscopic magnetic sphincter augmentation (MSA) and laparoscopic Nissen fundoplication (LNF) in a large healthcare system

Shahin Ayazi, Ali H. Zaidi, Ping Zheng, Kristy Chovanec, Nobel Chowdhury, Madison Salvitti, Kirsten Newhams, Jonathan Levy, Toshitaka Hoppo, Blair A. Jobe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations

Abstract

Introduction: Magnetic sphincter augmentation (MSA) is a promising antireflux surgical treatment. The cost associated with the device may be perceived as a drawback by payers, which may limit the adoption of this technique. There are limited data regarding the cost of MSA in the management of reflux disease. The aims of the study were to report the clinical outcome and quality of life measures in patients after MSA and to compare the pharmaceutical and procedure payer costs and the disease-related and overall expense of MSA compared to laparoscopic Nissen fundoplication (LNF) from a payer perspective. Methods and procedures: This prospective observational study was performed in conjunction with the region’s largest health insurance company. Data were collected on patients who underwent MSA over a 2-year period beginning in September 2015 at the study network hospitals. The LNF comparison group was procured from members’ claims data of the payer. Inclusion was predicated by patients having continuous coverage during study period. The total procedural reimbursement and the disease-related and overall medical claims submitted up to 12 months prior to surgery and up to 12 months following surgery were obtained. The payer reimbursement data are presented as allowed cost per member per month (PMPM). These values were then compared between groups. Results: There were 195 patients who underwent MSA and 1131 that had LNF. MSA results in comparable symptom control, PPI elimination rate, and quality of life measures compared to values reported for LNF in the literature. The median (IQR) reimbursement of surgery was $13,522 (13,195–14,439) for those who underwent MSA and $13,388 (9951–16,261) for patients with LNF, p = 0.02. In patients who underwent MSA, the median reimbursement related to the upper gastrointestinal disease was $ 305 PMPM, at 12 months prior to surgery and $ 104 at 12 months after surgery, representing 66% decrease in cost. These values were $ 233 PMPM and $126 PMPM for patients who underwent LNF, representing a 46% decrease (p = 0.0001). At 12 months following surgery, the reimbursement for overall medical expenses had decreased by 10.7% in the MSA group and 1.4% in the LNF group when compared to the preoperative baseline reimbursement. The reimbursement for PPI use after surgery showed a 95% decrease in the MSA group and 90% among LNF group when compared to the preoperative baseline (p = 0.10). Conclusion: When compared with LNF, MSA results in a reduction of disease-related expenses for the payer in the year following surgery. While MSA is associated with a higher procedural payer cost compared to LNF, payer costs may offset due to reduction in the expenses after surgery.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2279-2286
Number of pages8
JournalSurgical Endoscopy and Other Interventional Techniques
Volume34
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 May 2020
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Cost
  • Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
  • Magnetic sphincter augmentation
  • Nissen fundoplication

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