British National Health Service's and women's costs of antenatal ultrasound screening and follow-up tests

J Henderson, L Bricker, Tracy Roberts, M Mugford, J Neilson, J Garcia

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    22 Citations (Scopus)


    Objective To estimate resource use and costs associated with routine obstetric ultrasound and follow-up tests from both the British National Health Service and women's perspectives. Methods Women attending Liverpool Women's Hospital (UK) in 1998 and 1999 were involved in the study. Bottom-up and top-down costings of National Health Service resources using questionnaires and diaries to record staff time associated with procedures were performed. Questionnaires were used to assess women's costs of attending for antenatal ultrasound scans. Results Routine antenatal ultrasound scans at Liverpool Women's Hospital cost the National Health Service between pound14 and pound16 per scan. More detailed secondary scans and other follow-up procedures cost substantially more. Costs to women, their families and their employers were estimated at between pound9 and pound15 per scan, depending on assumptions about the opportunity costs of time when not in paid employment and costs to employers of women who were in paid employment. Conclusions Accurate estimates of costs to the National Health Service associated with routine antenatal ultrasound scanning are substantially lower than that cited in much of the literature. Costs to women are very similar to National Health Service costs. Economic evaluations should attempt to include costs to users of the service, particularly when the burden of cost is likely to shift.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)154-162
    Number of pages9
    JournalUltrasound in Obstetrics and Gynecology
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2002


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