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June 1985

The Economic Costs of Schizophrenia: Implications for Public Policy

Author Affiliations

From the Quality Assurance Program, School of Psychiatry (Drs Andrews and Silove), and School of Health Administration (Dr Lapsley), University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia; Department of Psychiatry, University of Western Australia, Perth (Dr Hall); and Commonwealth Institute of Health (Dr Goldstein) and Department of Econometrics (Dr Bartels), University of Sydney.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1985;42(6):537-543. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1985.01790290015001

• The direct and indirect costs associated with schizophrenia in Australia were calculated using the incidence approach and compared with similar costings of myocardial infarction in Australia and the United States. In Australia schizophrenia affects one-twelfth as many people as does myocardial infarction, yet costs half as much. This is because the stream of costs associated with each case of schizophrenia is six times the stream of costs associated with myocardial infarction. To illustrate the utility of this costing approach, the information was used to estimate the cost-benefit ratio likely to follow the introduction of social intervention strategies. The information also showed that Australian support for research in schizophrenia is inadequate when compared with that for myocardial infarction and quite out of proportion to the cost of schizophrenia to the community.

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