New Database of published health service unit costs
(Vienna, 14 March 2016) MedUni Vienna has made publicly available database of Austrian unit costs. The DHE Unit Cost Online Database, compiled and managed by the Department of Health Economics (DHE) at the Center for Public Health collates published costs of services within the Austrian health system – such as doctor’s appointments and hospital stays. The database is freely available at the DHE homepage.
The DHE Unit Cost Online Database was created by the Department of Health Economics (DHE) of the Centre for Public Health to gather data about costs of services within the Austrian health system to promote the use of standardised cost information in health economic analyses. The database includes, for example, costs for GP appointments, hospital stays and even costs for lost production when people are on sick leave.
The database is part of a larger initiative at the Department of Health Economics, the so-called DHE Unit Cost Programme for Austria, the first phase of which was to create a publicly accessible and regularly updated database of unit costs that have been used in existing, publicly available health economic studies. This database is especially seen as a useful building block for the research community requiring cost data and cost sources and is expected to greatly reduce the amount of work involved in such analyses. The next steps of the initiative are to continue to increase resources available to assess and understand economic costs of health services in Austria and expand the coverage and the level of standardisation of the available unit costs.
Where do the data come from?
The unit costs were extracted from scientific studies and project reports published between 2004 and 2015 identified by way of a systematic literature review and grey literature search. The preliminary version of the database includes more than 400 unit costs relating to direct medical, direct non-medical and indirect costs and is to be regularly updated. Alongside the listed unit costs, the database also gives the original source information and the limitations specified in the original study. A substantial number of the studies found originate from researchers affiliated with the MedUni Vienna.
The DHE Unit Cost Online Database can be downloaded as an Excel document free of charge.