Cost-Effectiveness of Newborn Screening for Spinal Muscular Atrophy in England.
Weidlich D., Servais L., Kausar I., Howells R., Bischof M.
INTRODUCTION: We sought to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of newborn screening (NBS) versus no NBS for 5q spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) in England. METHODS: A cost-utility analysis using a combination of decision tree and Markov model structures was developed to estimate the lifetime health effects and costs of NBS for SMA, compared with no NBS, from the perspective of the National Health Service (NHS) in England. A decision tree was designed to capture NBS outcomes, and Markov modeling was used to project long-term health outcomes and costs for each patient group following diagnosis. Model inputs were based on existing literature, local data, and expert opinion. Sensitivity and scenario analyses were conducted to assess the robustness of the model and the validity of the results. RESULTS: The introduction of NBS for SMA in England is estimated to identify approximately 56 (96% of cases) infants with SMA per year. Base-case results indicate that NBS is dominant (less costly and more effective) than a scenario without NBS, with a yearly cohort of newborns accruing incremental savings of £62,191,531 and an estimated gain in quality-adjusted life-years of 529 years over their lifetime. Deterministic and probabilistic sensitivity analyses demonstrated the robustness of the base-case results. CONCLUSIONS: NBS improves health outcomes for patients with SMA and is less costly compared with no screening; therefore, it is a cost-effective use of resources from the perspective of the NHS in England.