Activity-Based Costing of Intensity-Modulated Proton versus Photon Therapy for Oropharyngeal Cancer
This study used clinicopathologic factors to match 25 patients with OPC who received IMPT and 25 patients with OPC treated with IMRT. Process maps were created for each multidisciplinary clinical activity (including chemotherapy and ancillary services) from initial consultation through 1 month of follow-up. Resource costs and times were determined for each activity.
Each patient-specific activity was linked with a process map and time-driven activity-based costing (TDABC) over the full cycle of care. All calculated costs were normalized to the lowest-cost IMRT patient. TDABC costs for IMRT were 1.00 to 3.33 times that of the lowest-cost IMRT patient (mean ± SD: 1.65 ± 0.56), while costs for IMPT were 1.88 to 4.32 times that of the lowest-cost IMRT patient (2.58 ± 0.39) (P < .05).
Although single-fraction costs were 2.79 times higher for IMPT than for IMRT (owing to higher equipment costs), average full cycle cost of IMPT was 1.53 times higher than IMRT, suggesting that the initial cost increase is partly mitigated by reductions in costs for other, non-RT supportive health care services.