ARTICLE ABSTRACTScreening for colorectal and breast cancer is considered cost effective, but limited evidence exists on cost-effectiveness of screening promotion interventions that simultaneously target both cancers. Increasing Colorectal and Breast Cancer Screening (Project COBRA), a randomized controlled trial conducted in the community, examined the cost-effectiveness of an innovative tailored web-based intervention compared with tailored telephone counseling and usual care. Screening status at 6 months was obtained by participant surveys plus medical record reviews. Cost was prospectively measured from the patient and provider perspectives using time logs and project invoices. Relative efficiency of the interventions was quantified by the incremental cost-effectiveness ratios. Nonparametric bootstrapping and net benefit regression analysis were used to assess statistical uncertainty of the results. The average cost per participant to implement the Phone counseling, Web-based, and Web + Phone counseling interventions were $277, $314, and $337, respectively. Comparing Phone counseling with usual care resulted in an additional cost of $300 (95% confidence interval [CI]: $283–$320) per cancer screening test and $421 (95% CI: $400–$441) per additional person screened in the target population. Phone counseling alone was more cost-effective than the Web + Phone intervention. Web-based intervention alone was more costly but less effective than the Phone counseling. When simultaneously promoting screening for both colorectal and breast cancer the Web-based intervention was less cost-effective compared with Phone and Web + Phone strategies. The results suggest that targeting multiple cancer screening may improve the cost-effectiveness of cancer screening interventions.
This study informs researchers, decision makers, healthcare providers, and payers about the improved cost-effectiveness of targeting multiple cancer screenings for cancer early detection programs.