Väätäinen S1, Soini E1, Arvonen S2, Suojanen L2, Pietiläinen KH3
1ESiOR Oy, Kuopio, 15, Finland, 2Virtual Hospital 2.0 project, Helsinki University Hospital, Helsinki, Finland, 3Obesity Research Unit, Research Program for Clinical and Molecular Metabolism, Faculty of Medicine, University of Helsinki and Obesity Center, Endocrinology, Abdominal Center, Helsinki University Central Hospital and University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland

OBJECTIVES: HealthyWeighHub (HWH) is a multidisciplinary eHealth program for management of obesity implemented in the HealthVillage of the Helsinki University Hospital (HUS). HWH is free of charge for all Finns with obesity through clinician’s referral. We evaluated and predicted HWH’s cost-benefits (costs and capacity).

METHODS: PICOSTEPS reporting framework was applied. Patients: 1] Finnish patients receiving obesity intervention in HUS Specific Catchment Area (HUS ERVA) and 2] patients with a body mass index > 30 kg/m2 in Finland nationally. Intervention: 12-month HWH (web-based program + virtual coach). Comparator: Conventional group coaching (CGC). Outcomes: Potential capacity freed (PCF, cost difference), capacity change. Settings: 1] Actualized PCF between 2016 to 2018 in HUS ERVA based on counterfactual estimation. 2] Predicted PCF at Finnish national level, if HWH was implemented gradually from 2018 to 2022 and the number of individuals with obesity was kept constant; based on modelling. Time: 1] Two and 2] five years, no discounting. Effects: Secondary care resource, patient co-payment and travelling costs. Perspective: Direct health service payer costs.

RESULTS: HWH’s actualized PCF was €2.69 million compared to CGC over the two-year period in the HUS ERVA. If also the CGC had been supplemented with HWH instead, total PCF could have been €3.71 million. On a national level, treating 1% of individuals with obesity with CGC was predicted to cost €28.0 million in 2022. With HWH the predicted cost was €7.31 million, resulting in annual PCF of €20.7 million (€3.75/capita) in 2022 and cumulative five-year PCF of €57.5 million (€10.43/capita). Approximately 3.8-times more patients could be provided care with HWH than possible with CGC, assuming fixed budget.

CONCLUSIONS: HWH is capacity-freeing and potentially cost-saving in comparison to CGC, and an efficient tool to combat the increasing obesity epidemic in Finland. HWH may also increase the availability and achievability of obesity-related services.

Conference/Value in Health Info

2019-11, ISPOR Europe 2019, Copenhagen, Denmark




Economic Evaluation, Epidemiology & Public Health, Health Service Delivery & Process of Care, Medical Technologies

Topic Subcategory

Digital Health, Public Health, Telemedicine


Diabetes/Endocrine/Metabolic Disorders, Nutrition

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