Exploring cost drivers to improve disease management: the case of type 2 diabetes at a tertiary hospital in Burundi, Africa
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Background. In Burundi, the International Diabetes Federation estimated the prevalence of diabetes mellitus (DM) as high as 2.4% in adults aged between 20 and 79 years old. Thus, the healthcare expenditure for the treatment of diabetic patients is considerably high.
Objective. This study explores the economic burden of type 2 DM and its cost drivers at a tertiary hospital in 2018. It included adult type 2 DM patients who received treatment from a tertiary hospital (Hospital Prince Regent Charles) in 2018. In this study, 81 patients were included.
Methods. Data on illness treatment and complications were collected through patient interviews and by reviewing patients’ medical and financial records. A stepwise multiple linear regression model was used to explore factors affecting the cost of type 2 diabetes mellitus.
Results. The average total cost per patient per year was estimated at $2621.06. The fitted cost model had an adjusted R2 of 0.427, which explained up to 43% of the variation in the total cost. The results suggest primary cost drivers such as treatment regimen, duration of the disease, payment method, and number of complications.
Conclusion. The findings confirm the profound economic burden of type 2 DM and the need to improve patient care and prevent disease progression. The establishment of a special clinic for patients with diabetes is recommended, as is financial support for underprivileged patients. A specific focus on cost drivers could help establish appropriate disease management programs to control the costs for type 2 diabetes patients.
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