Cost Analysis of a Randomized Trial of Getting to Outcomes Implementation Support for a Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program Offered in Boys and Girls Clubs in Alabama and Georgia

Published in: Prevention Science, Volume 21, pages 1114–1125 (2020). doi: 10.1007/s11121-020-01162-y

Posted on RAND.org on October 13, 2021

by Patricia M. Herman, Matthew Chinman, Patricia A. Ebener, Patrick S. Malone, Joie D. Acosta

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Implementation support can improve outcomes of evidence-based programs (EBP) for adolescents, but with a cost. To assist in determining whether this cost is worthwhile, this study estimated the cost of adding Getting To Outcomes© (GTO) implementation support to a teen pregnancy and sexually transmitted infection prevention EBP called Making Proud Choices (MPC) in 32 Boys and Girls Clubs (BGCs) in Alabama and Georgia. Enhancing Quality Interventions Promoting Healthy Sexuality (EQUIPS) was a 2-year, cluster-randomized controlled trial comparing MPC with MPC + GTO. We used micro-costing to estimate costs and captured MPC and GTO time from activity logs completed by GTO staff. Key resource use and cost components were compared between the randomized groups, years, and states (to capture different community site circumstances) using 2-sample t tests. There were no significant differences between randomized groups in attendees per site, resource use, or costs for either year. However, there were significant differences between states. Adding GTO to MPC increased the societal costs per attendee from $67 to $144 (2015 US dollars) in Georgia and from $106 to $314 in Alabama. The higher Alabama cost was due to longer travel distances and to more BGC staff time spent on GTO in that state. GTO also improved adherence, classroom delivery, and condom-use intentions more in Alabama youth. Thus, Alabama's GTO-related BGC staff time costs may be better estimates of effective GTO. If teen childbearing costs taxpayers approximately $20,000 per teen birth, adding GTO to MPC would be worthwhile to society if it prevented one more teen birth per 140 attendees than MPC alone.

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