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01.12.2012 | Research | Ausgabe 1/2012 Open Access

Health Economics Review 1/2012

Budgetary impact analysis of buprenorphine-naloxone combination (Suboxone®) in Spain

Health Economics Review > Ausgabe 1/2012
Jose Martinez-Raga, Francisco Gonzalez-Saiz, Julian Oñate, Itziar Oyagüez, Eliazar Sabater, Miguel A Casado
Wichtige Hinweise

Electronic supplementary material

The online version of this article (doi:10.​1186/​2191-1991-2-3) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

Competing interests

This work was supported by an unrestricted research grant sponsored by Reckitt Benckiser. The authors have not transmitted any conflicts of interest, because the concept, design and development of the model have been carried out independently. IO, ES and MAC are PORIB employees a consultant company specialized in economic evaluation of health technologies.

Authors' contributions

JMR and MAC conceived of the study and performed a general coordination of the project. FGS and JO have made substantial contributions to conception and model design. IO and ES have involved in analysis. JMR, FGS and JO have played key role in acquisition of data and interpretation of the results. IO, ES and MAC validated the assumptions taken in model design, reviewed the results, participating in interpretations of data, and were involved in drafting the manuscript. All the authors have participated sufficiently in the work to take public responsibility for appropriate portions of the content. All of them have reviewed the final version of the manuscript and have given a final permission of the version to be published.



Opioid addiction is a worldwide problem. Agonist opioid treatment (AOT) is the most widespread and frequent pharmacotherapeutic approach. Methadone has been the most widely used AOT, but buprenorphine, a partial μ-opiod agonist and a κ-opiod antagonist, is fast gaining acceptance. The objective was to assess the budgetary impact in Spain of the introduction of buprenorphine-naloxone (B/N) combination.


A budgetary impact model was developed to estimate healthcare costs of the addition of B/N combination to the therapeutic arsenal for treating opioid dependent patients, during a 3-year period under the National Health System perspective. Inputs for the model were obtained from the specialized scientific literature. Detailed information concerning resource consumption (drug cost, logistics, dispensing, medical, psychiatry and pharmacy supervision, counselling and laboratory test) was obtained from a local expert panel. Costs are expressed in euros (€, 2010).


The number of patients estimated to be prescribed B/N combination was 2,334; 2,993 and 3,589 in the first, second and third year respectively. Total budget is €85,766,129; €79,855,471 and €79,137,502 in the first, second and third year for the scenario without B/N combination. With B/N combination the total budget would be €86,589,210; €80,398,259 and €79,708,964 in the first, second and third year of the analyses. Incremental cost/patient comparing the addition of the B/N combination to the scenario only with methadone is €10.58; €6.98 and €7.34 in the first, second and third year respectively.


Addition of B/N combination would imply a maximum incremental yearly cost of €10.58 per patient compared to scenario only with methadone and would provide additional benefits.
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