Cost-Effectiveness of Everolimus for Second-Line Treatment of Metastatic Renal Cell Carcinoma in Serbia

Jovan Mihajlovic*, Petros Pechlivanoglou, Ana Sabo, Zdenko Tomic, Maarten J. Postma

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Background: New targeted therapeutics for metastatic renal cell carcinoma (mRCC) enable an increment in progression-free survival (PFS) ranging from 2 to 6 months. Compared with best supportive care, everolimus demonstrated an additional PFS of 3 months in patients with mRCC whose disease had progressed on sunitinib and/or sorafenib. The only targeted therapy for mRCC currently reimbursed in Serbia is sunitinib.

Objective: The aim of this study was to estimate the cost-effectiveness and the budget impact of the introduction of everolimus in Serbia in comparison to best supportive care, for mRCC patients refractory to sunitinib.

Methods: A Markov model was designed corresponding with Serbian treatment protocols. A health care payer perspective was taken, including direct costs only. Treated and untreated cohorts were followed up over 18 cycles, each cycle lasting 8 weeks, which covered the lifetime horizon of mRCC patients refractory to the first-line treatment. Annual discounted rates of 1.5% for effectiveness and 3% for costs were applied. Transitions between health states were modeled by time-dependent probabilities extracted from published Kaplan-Meier curves of PFS and overall survival (OS). Utility values were obtained from the appraisals of other mRCC treatments. One-way and probabilistic sensitivity analyses were done to test the robustness and uncertainty of the base case estimate. Lastly, the potential impacts of everolimus on the overall health care expenditures on annual and 4-year bases were estimated in the budget-impact analysis.

Results: The incremental cost-effectiveness ratio for everolimus was estimated at (sic)86,978 per quality-adjusted life-year. Sensitivity analysis identified the hazard multiplier, a statistical approximator of OS gain, as the main driver of everolimus cost-effectiveness. Furthermore, probabilistic sensitivity analyses revealed a wide 95% CI around the base case incremental cost-effectiveness ratio estimate ( 32,594 425,258 per quality-adjusted life-year). Finally, an average annual budgetary impact of everolimus in first 4 years after its potential reimbursement would be around 270,000, contributing to

Conclusions: Everolimus as a second-line treatment of mRCC is not likely to be a cost-effective option under the present conditions in Serbia, with a relatively limited impact on its budget in oncology. A major constraint on the estimation of the cost-effectiveness of everolimus relates to the uncertainty around the everolimus effect on extending OS. However, prior to a final decision on the acceptance/rejection of everolimus, reassessment of the whole therapeutic group might be needed to construct an economically rational treatment strategy within the mRCC field. (C) 2013 Elsevier HS Journals, Inc. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1909-1922
Number of pages14
JournalClinical Therapeutics
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec-2013


  • cost-effectiveness
  • everolimus
  • renal cell carcinoma
  • Serbia

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