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Evaluation of Resource Utilization and Cost Burden Before and After an Employer-Based Migraine Education Program

Page, Matthew J. MPP; Paramore, L Clark MSPH; Doshi, Dilesh PharmD; Rupnow, Marcia F. T. PhD

Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine: February 2009 - Volume 51 - Issue 2 - p 213-220
doi: 10.1097/JOM.0b013e318192bcd1
Original Articles

Objectives: Study objectives were to determine the impact of migraine and severe headache on employer burden, resource utilization, and workplace productivity before and after a migraine education program; estimate the associated costs in an employed sample; and evaluate whether a migraine management program can help manage costs.

Methods: Employees of three US companies were informed of a company-specific web site with information regarding the study as well as a validated migraine screening questionnaire. Employees who screened positive for migraine completed a baseline survey examining migraine frequency and severity, Migraine Disability Assessment (MIDAS) grade, medical resource utilization, and impact on workplace productivity. After the baseline survey, employees received three print packets and six e-mailed newsletters of migraine management educational materials. Six months after the last mailing, participants completed a follow-up survey. Participants were stratified by MIDAS grade and prevention needs status. Direct and indirect migraine-related costs were estimated and differences between baseline and follow-up survey results were analyzed.

Results: Indirect costs and measures of migraine impact improved after the educational program. Three-month indirect costs of migraine decreased 34.5% and total costs decreased 14.7% after the educational program.

Conclusion: Migraine management programs, including screening questionnaires and educational initiatives, may potentially help reduce the employer cost burden due to improvements in their employees’ disability associated with migraine headache.

From the Center for Health Economics, Epidemiology and Science Policy (Mr Page, Mr Paramore), United BioSource Corporation, Bethesda, MD; and Outcomes Research (Dr Doshi, Dr Rupnow), Ortho-McNeil Janssen Scientific Affairs, LLC, Titusville, NJ.

Marcia F. T. Rupnow is currently at Ethicon Inc., Somerville, NJ.

Address correspondence to: L. Clark Paramore, MSPH, Center for Health Economics, Epidemiology and Science Policy, United BioSource Corporation, 101 Station Landing, Medford, MA 02155; E-mail:

©2009The American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine