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Omega-3 and Healthcare Cost Savings

20th June 2016

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Healthcare cost savings of omega-3 food supplements in the European Union

The objective of the Healthcare Cost Savings of Omega 3 Food Supplements in the European Union was to determine if cost savings could be realised, in the form of avoided healthcare-related expenditures from the use of an omega-3 EPA + DHA supplement. A report provided by Food Supplements Europe examined the body of clinical research that tests the hypothesis that the use of omega-3 EPA + DHA supplements can potentially reduce CVD-attributed hospital utilisation costs in the European Union among those at a high risk of experiencing a costly, Cardiovascular Disease (CVD) attributed event.

Target Population – a total of 38.4 million CVD-attributed hospital events are expected over the next 5 years (2016 to 2020) among adults age 55 and older in the EU, or 24% of the target population will experience a CVD-attributed hospital event. The total cost of addressing CVD in the EU will be €1,328 billion over the next 5 years, or €34,637 per event over the same period.

Study Methods – random-effects systematic review approach was used to infer the effect of using an omega-3 food supplement on the occurrence of a CVD attributed medical event. A literature search was conducted and 18 randomised controlled trials (RCT) were identified that tested for the presence of a relationship between omega-3 EPA+DHA use and the occurrence of a CVD event. The study’s findings were aggregated and the expected relative risk reduction was determined and then used as an input into a theoretical economic scenario model which determined the difference in benefits and costs EU health care policy makers can expect if everybody in a targeted population with high CVD risk adopted an omega-3 daily. Results of this theoretical economic analysis provides insight on potential health care cost savings per capita and per EU country that could be realised through the targeted use of omega-3 EPA+DHA food supplements.

Science-based Impact of Omega-3 Use – the relative risk of an individual in the target population experiencing a CVD-attributed adverse event is reduced by 4.9% given the daily use of 1,000 mg of omega-3 EPA + DHA food supplements. This corresponds to over 1.5 million avoided CVD-attributed hospital events throughout the EU over the next five years.

Economic Findings (Total EU) – It is expected that 20% of the target population in the EU today is already taking Omega-3 and realizing some of its potential health benefits. The below findings are the total potential economic benefits that could be realised if 100% of the EU target population used 1,000 mg omega-3 EPA+DHA food supplements daily.

• Total Avoidable CVD-attributed Costs per year (S): €12.9 billion

• Net Avoidable CVD-attributed Costs per year (B): €7.3 billion

• Net Avoidable CVD-attributed Costs per person per year (B/Pop): €188 per person

• Benefit/cost ratio (€ Avoided CVD-attributed Costs per €1 spent on Omega-3): €2.29

The objective of the Healthcare Cost Savings of Omega 3 Food Supplements in the European Union is to determine if cost savings could be realised, in the form of avoided healthcare-related expenditures from the use of an omega-3 EPA + DHA supplement. Food Supplements Europe report examines the body of clinical research that tests the hypothesis that the use of omega-3 EPA + DHA supplements can potentially reduce CVD-attributed hospital utilisation costs in the European Union among those at a high risk of experiencing a costly, CVD-attributed event.



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