The aim of this study was to analyze the cost utility of a group-based form of acceptance and commitment therapy (GACT) in patients with fibromyalgia (FM) compared with patients receiving recommended pharmacological treatment (RPT) or on a waiting list (WL). The data were derived from a previously published study, a randomized controlled trial that focused on clinical outcomes. Health economic outcomes included health-related quality of life and health care use at baseline and at 6-month follow-up using the EuroQoL and the Client Service Receipt Inventory, respectively. Analyses included quality-adjusted life years, direct and indirect cost differences, and incremental cost effectiveness ratios. A total of 156 FM patients were randomized (51 GACT, 52 RPT, 53 WL). GACT was related to significantly less direct costs over the 6-month study period compared with both control arms (GACT €824.2 ± 1,062.7 vs RPT €1,730.7 ± 1,656.8 vs WL €2,462.7 ± 2,822.0). Lower direct costs for GACT compared with RPT were due to lower costs from primary care visits and FM-related medications. The incremental cost effectiveness ratios were dominant in the completers' analysis and remained robust in the sensitivity analyses. In conclusion, acceptance and commitment therapy appears to be a cost-effective treatment compared with RPT in patients with FM.
PERSPECTIVE: Decision-makers have to prioritize their budget on the treatment option that is the most cost effective for the management of a specific patient group. From government as well as health care perspectives, this study shows that a GACT is more cost effective than pharmacological treatment in management of FM.