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Economic Evaluation of Combining Pharmaco- and Behavioral Therapies for Smoking Cessation in an Occupational Medicine Setting

Rejas-Gutiérrez, Javier, PhD; López-Ibáñez de Aldecoa, Alejandra, PhD; Casasola, Marisol, BSc; Varela, Pilar, PhD; Quesada, Sebastiana, BSc; Olive, Victoria, MD; Arriaza, Encarnación, MD

Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine: April 2019 - Volume 61 - Issue 4 - p 318–327
doi: 10.1097/JOM.0000000000001546

Objective: To estimate the budget impact (BI) of funding pharmaco+behavioral therapies for smoking cessation from an employer perspective.

Methods: A hybrid economic model was applied to estimate the BI, which considered up to four cessation attempts over a 3-year horizon. The model estimated the costs of funding a cessation programme, and the mean savings due to avoided loss of productivity and absenteeism because of smoking cessation.

Results: 53.8% of smokers quit smoking. The programme, which costs €394,468, would generate earnings of €1,342,133; with €644,974 in incremental net savings. These mean €1.64 in return per each euro invested. Results show net benefits from two cigarettes smoked while working every day.

Conclusions: Considering the avoided costs of loss of productivity and absenteeism, funding a smoking cessation programme of pharmaco+behavioral therapies would produce substantial savings for the employer.

Health Economics and Outcomes Research Department (Dr Rejas-Gutiérrez); Trial Form Support Develop, Madrid (Dr López-Ibáñez de Aldecoa); Occupational Health and Risks Prevention Service (Ms Casasola, Dr Arriaza), Pfizer, SLU, Alcobendas; Human Resources and Risks Prevention Area (Dr Varela); and Labour Health and Risks Prevention Service (Ms Quesada, Dr Olive), Hospital Clinic, Barcelona, Spain.

Address correspondence to: Javier Rejas-Gutiérrez, PhD, Departamento de Fármacoeconomía e Investigación de Resultados en Salud, Pfizer, S.L.U. Avda. de Europa, 20-B, 28108 Alcobendas, Madrid, Spain (

Clinical significance: This economic study shows that implementing health programs in the workplace for smoking cessation is profitable for the employer's economy. It represents a valuable tool that may encourage company's decision makers to fund smoking cessation drugs improving the workforce health and thereby redounding in benefits which would generate economic savings for employers.

Funding: This work has been carried out without any type of funding except for editorial support (English edition) that was performed by Welocalize Life Sciences and was funded by Pfizer, SLU.

Javier Rejas, Marisol Casasola, and Encarnación Arriaza are employees of Pfizer, S.L.U. Alejandra L. Ibáñez de Aldecoa works on assignment at Pfizer, S.L.U. The other authors declare that they have no competing interest as a consequence of this work.

Copyright © 2019 by the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine