Costs and Cost-Effectiveness of a Church-Based Intervention to Promote Mammography Screening

Published in: Health Services Research, v. 35, no. 5, pt. 1, Dec. 2000, p. 1037-1057

Posted on RAND.org on January 01, 2000

by Susan Stockdale, Emmett B. Keeler, Naihua Duan, Kathryn Pitkin Derose, Sarah Fox

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OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the costs of implementing a church-based, telephone-counseling program for increasing mammography use, and to identify the components of costs and the likely cost-effectiveness in hypothetical communities with varying characteristics. DATA SOURCES/STUDY SETTING: An ethnically and socioeconomically diverse sample of 1,443 women recruited from 45 churches participating in the Los Angeles Mammography Promotion (LAMP) program were followed from 1995 to 1997. STUDY DESIGN: Churches were stratified into blocks and randomized into three intervention arms-telephone counseling, mail counseling, and control. The authors surveyed participants before and after the intervention to collect data on mammography use and demographic characteristics. DATA COLLECTION/EXTRACTION METHODS: The authors used call records, activity reports, and interviews to collect data on the time and materials needed to organize and carry out the intervention. The authors constructed a standard model of costs and cost-effectiveness based on these data and the Year One results of the LAMP program. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The cost in materials and overhead to the church site was $10.89 per participant and $188 per additional screening. However, when the estimated cost for church volunteers' time was included, the cost of the intervention increased substantially. CONCLUSIONS: A church-based program to promote the use of mammography would be feasible for many churches with the use of volunteer labor and resources.

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