Outpatient costs of medications for patients with chronic heart failure.Am J Crit Care. 2002 Sep; 11(5):474-8.AJ
The outpatient costs of medications prescribed for chronic heart failure are high and are often borne by individual patients. Lack of financial resources may force noncompliance with use of medications.
To compare the outpatient costs of medications for patients with different New York Heart Association classifications of chronic heart failure.
The charts of 138 patients with chronic heart failure were reviewed retrospectively. Outpatient costs of medications were obtained from the Web sites of commercial pharmacies. Medications were classified by type according to the system of the American Heart Association. A mean cost for each classification of medication was used for analysis.
The overall mean monthly cost of medications for chronic heart failure was $438. Patients with class II and class III chronic heart failure had the highest costs: $541 and $514, respectively. Analysis of variance indicated that the differences in monthly costs of medications between the patients with the 4 stages of chronic heart failure were significant (F = 4.86, P = .003). A post hoc Scheffé test revealed significant differences in costs between patients with class I and patients with class II heart failure (P = .02) and between patients with class I and those with class III heart failure (P = .02).
The outpatient costs of medications for chronic heart failure are significant. Ability to pay for prescribed medications must be determined. Healthcare professionals must maintain an awareness of the costs of medications and patients' ability to pay.