Women's Health Initiative touts ROI

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The NIH-backed Women's Health Initiative (WHI) reported a financial analysis of data from one of its postmenopausal hormone therapy trials, noting that each dollar received “results in a return of $140 in net economic value for each dollar invested in the trial.”

Results of the trial, called the Postmenopausal Hormone Therapy Trial, were published in 2002. But its long-term financial and health outcomes appeared yesterday in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

The ROI assessment was based on a disease simulation model which found that the guidance provided by WHI clinical trial results translated to 76,000 fewer cases of cardiovascular disease, 4.3 million fewer combined hormone therapy users, 126,000 breast cancer cases, 145,000 more quality-adjusted life-years, and direct medical expenditure savings of $35.2 billion.

However, the analysis also found that the guidance provided by the WHI clinical trial results led to 263,000 more fractures (hip, vertebral, and other osteoporotic bones).

The researchers calculated the total net economic return of the trial, which cost $260 million in inflation-adjusted dollars, at $37.1 billion.

The WHI has tracked women since 1993.

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