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Rehabilitation Research and Practice
Volume 2011 (2011), Article ID 487025, 11 pages
Research Article

Cost of Illness for Patients with Arthritis Receiving Multidisciplinary Rehabilitation Care

1Department of Rheumatology, National Resource Center for Rehabilitation in Rheumatology, Diakonhjemmet Hospital, 0319 Oslo, Norway
2FORMI, Oslo University Hospital, Ullevaal, 0407 Oslo, Norway
3Department of Rheumatology, Diakonhjemmet Hospital, 0319 Oslo, Norway
4Department of Health Management and Health Economics, University of Oslo, 0318 Oslo, Norway
5Center for Health Economic Evaluation (HEHØ), Oslo University Hospital, 0318 Oslo, Norway

Received 9 March 2011; Accepted 14 April 2011

Academic Editor: K. S. Sunnerhagen

Copyright © 2011 Margreth Grotle et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Purpose. To describe healthcare consumption and costs prior to, during, and after multidisciplinary rehabilitation due to arthritis. Methods. 306 patients (age 18–75 years) with arthritis scheduled for multidisciplinary rehabilitation care in 9 rehabilitation centres and 4 rheumatology hospital departments were included and followed for 6 months. Costs were estimated in Euros (€) for the total sample and five clinical subgroups. Results. Healthcare costs ranged from 3,033 to 91,336 and were significantly higher at hospital departments compared to rehabilitation centres: 9,722 (SD 5,406) and 4,250 (SD 1,040). While total costs prior to and after rehabilitation were stable for those receiving rehabilitation at a hospital, there was a significant increase in costs for those being at a rehabilitation centre. Total mean costs were more than doubled when including social costs: from 32,410 (95% CI 20,074–37,017) to 51,491 (95% CI 49,055–61,657). Conclusions. Healthcare and social costs for arthritis rehabilitation were substantial both before and after a rehabilitation stay. It is important to explore methods to reduce the length of rehabilitation stay and production loss connected to rehabilitation of patients with rheumatic disease.