Table of Contents
Journal of Respiratory Medicine
Volume 2014, Article ID 768378, 5 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2014/768378
Research Article

Out-of-Pocket Costs of Asthma Follow-Up Care in Adults in a Sub-Saharan African Country

1Department of Medicine, College of Medicine, University of Nigeria, Enugu Campus, Enugu 400241, Nigeria
2Department of Medicine, College of Health Sciences, University of Ilorin, Ilorin 240213, Nigeria
3Department of Internal Medicine, Federal Teaching Hospital, Ebonyi State, Abakaliki 480281, Nigeria
4Department of Medicine, University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital, Ituku Ozalla, Enugu 400228, Nigeria
5Medical Division, Nigerian Ports Authority PLC, Lagos 101251, Nigeria

Received 4 January 2014; Revised 2 March 2014; Accepted 3 March 2014; Published 31 March 2014

Academic Editor: Umesh Yadav

Copyright © 2014 Cajetan Chigozie Onyedum 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.

Abstract

Asthma care imposes economic burden on affected patients. Patient costs for asthma care have not been documented in Africa. We aimed to determine the out-of-pocket cost of asthma follow-up care incurred by patients in Nigeria. We conducted a cross-sectional study in three tertiary hospitals in southeastern and northwestern Nigeria. Poorly controlled asthma patients attending a follow-up visit in the respiratory clinic of the hospitals were surveyed. Sociodemographic, health-seeking behavior, and cost data were collected using a structured questionnaire. Of the 110 patients who completed the study, 56 (51%) were females. Also, 72 (65%) of the patients had known about their asthma illness for more than four years. Mean annual direct cost of asthma care was US$368.4 (±228) per patient. Medication cost accounted for the majority (87%) of this cost. Patient costs of care incurred did not differ significantly across age (P = 0.15), education (P = 0.23), marital status (0.49), residence (P = 0.47), or gender (P = 0.65) categories. We conclude that direct cost of care was found to be substantial among poorly controlled asthma patients. Further studies to estimate the costs incurred by patients with exacerbation and differing severity of the disease should be conducted.