A comparative cost analysis of robotic-assisted surgery versus laparoscopic surgery and open surgery: the necessity of investing knowledgeably

Giorgia Tedesco, Francesco C. Faggiano, Erica Leo, Pietro Derrico, Matteo Ritrovato

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Background: Robotic surgery has been proposed as a minimally invasive surgical technique with advantages for both surgeons and patients, but is associated with high costs (installation, use and maintenance). The Health Technology Assessment Unit of the Bambino Gesù Children’s Hospital sought to investigate the economic sustainability of robotic surgery, having foreseen its impact on the hospital budget Methods: Break-even and cost-minimization analyses were performed. A deterministic approach for sensitivity analysis was applied by varying the values of parameters between pre-defined ranges in different scenarios to see how the outcomes might differ. Results: The break-even analysis indicated that at least 349 annual interventions would need to be carried out to reach the break-even point. The cost-minimization analysis showed that robotic surgery was the most expensive procedure among the considered alternatives (in terms of the contribution margin). Conclusions: Robotic surgery is a good clinical alternative to laparoscopic and open surgery (for many pediatric operations). However, the costs of robotic procedures are higher than the equivalent laparoscopic and open surgical interventions. Therefore, in the short run, these findings do not seem to support the decision to introduce a robotic system in our hospital.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-8
Number of pages8
JournalSurgical Endoscopy and Other Interventional Techniques
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - Mar 16 2016

Keywords

  • Break-even point
  • Cost minimization
  • Pediatric robotic surgery
  • Robotic surgical system

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery

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