What evidence do economic evaluations in dental care provide? A scoping review

J. Eow B. Duane A. Solaiman U. Hussain N. Lemasney R. Ang N. O’Kelly-Lynch G. Girgis L. Collazo B. Johnston

What evidence do economic evaluations in dental care provide? A scoping review

Authors: J. Eow B. Duane A. Solaiman U. Hussain N. Lemasney R. Ang N. O’Kelly-Lynch G. Girgis L. Collazo B. Johnston
doi: 10.1922/CDH_4426Eow08

Abstract

Objective: To collate the body of evidence in economic studies of different dental interventions. Methods: Eligible English studies after 1980 were sourced from MEDLINE using MeSH terms and reviewed independently by 4 teams. Studies were grouped according to the type of dental intervention and their quality appraised using Drummond’s Checklist. Results: The number of dental economic studies increased from 1980 to 2016. A total of 91 studies were identified following the search strategy. Most studies were conducted in the United States (n=23), followed by Germany (n=14), Australia (n=10) and the United Kingdom (n=9). Preventative dental interventions comprised 37% of included studies (n=34), followed by restorative (n=14), prosthodontic (n=13) and periodontal interventions (n=12). Cost effectiveness analyses (n=68) comprise 75% of full economic evaluation (EE) studies, followed by cost-utility (n=17) and cost-benefit (n=6). Quality assessment checklists identified 60 studies as good, 23 as moderate and 8 as poor. Common methodological limitations were identified in EE studies. Comparison of studies identified trends and common findings within each dental intervention. Conclusion: High quality economic studies are important in directing resources and funding by policy makers. Standardisation of reporting outcome measures will improve the potential for interpretation and comparison between studies. Research adhering to recommended quality assessment checklists will improve the overall quality of evidence to better identify cost-effective treatments for different dental interventions. Keywords: Dentistry, oral health, dental economics, economic evaluation, cost-effectiveness analysis, cost-utility analysis, cost-benefit analysis

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