Cost-Effectiveness of a Community-Based Exercise Programme in COPD Self-Management

Marlies Zwerink*, Tanja Effing, Huib A. M. Kerstjens, Paul van der Valk, Marjolein Brusse-Keizer, Job van der Palen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Introduction: Information regarding cost-effectiveness of community-based exercise programmes in COPD is scarce. Therefore, we have investigated whether a community-based exercise programme is a cost-effective component of self-management for patients with COPD after 2 years of follow-up.

Methods: All included COPD patients participated in four self-management sessions. Additionally, patients in the COPE-active group participated in an 11-month community-based exercise programme led by physiotherapists. Patients trained 3 times/week for 6 months and two times/week during the subsequent 5 months. In both periods, one of these weekly training sessions was home-based (unsupervised). No formal physiotherapy sessions were offered to COPE-active patients in the second year. A decision analytical model with a 24-month perspective was used to evaluate cost-effectiveness. Incremental cost-effectiveness ratios (ICER) were calculated and cost-effectiveness planes were created.

Results: Data of 77 patients participating in the exercise programme and 76 patients in the control group were analysed. The ICER for an additional patient prevented from deteriorating at least 47.5 meters on the ISWT was euro6257. The ICER for an additional patient with a clinically relevant improvement (>= 500 steps/day) in physical activity was euro1564, and the ICER for an additional quality-adjusted life year (QALY) was euro10 950.

Conclusion: Due to a lack of maintenance of beneficial effects on our primary outcome exercise capacity after 2 years of follow-up and higher costs of the programme, the community-based exercise programme cannot be considered cost-effective compared to self-management programmes only. Nevertheless, the ICERs for the secondary outcomes physical activity and QALY are generally considered acceptable.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)214-223
Number of pages10
JournalCOPD: Journal of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 3-Mar-2016


  • community-based
  • COPD
  • self-management
  • physical activity
  • exercise
  • cost-effectiveness

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