Cost analysis of the Communication and Low Mood (CALM) randomised trial of behavioural therapy for stroke patients with aphasia

Humphreys, Ioan, Thomas, Shirley A., Phillips, Ceri and Lincoln, Nadina (2015) Cost analysis of the Communication and Low Mood (CALM) randomised trial of behavioural therapy for stroke patients with aphasia. Clinical Rehabilitation, 29 (1). pp. 30-41. ISSN 1477-0873

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To evaluate the cost effectiveness of a behavioural therapy intervention shown to be clinically effective in comparison with usual care for stroke patients with aphasia.


Randomised controlled trial with comparison of costs and calculation of incremental cost effectiveness ratio.




Participants identified as having low mood on either the Visual Analog Mood Scale sad item (≥50) or Stroke Aphasic Depression Questionnaire Hospital version 21 (SADQH21) (≥6) were recruited.


Participants were randomly allocated to behavioural therapy or usual care using internet-based randomisation generated in advance of the study by a clinical trials unit.

Main measures:

Outcomes were assessed at six months after randomisation, blind to group allocation. The costs were assessed from a service use questionnaire. Effectiveness was defined as the change in SADQH21 scores and a cost-effectiveness analysis was performed comparing the behavioural group with the usual care control group. The cost analysis was undertaken from the perspective of the UK NHS and Social Services.


The greatest difference was in home help costs where there was a saving of £56.20 in the intervention group compared to an increase of £61.40 in the control group. At six months the SADQH21 score for the intervention group was 17.3 compared to the control group value of 20.4. This resulted in a mean increase of 0.7 in the control group, compared to a mean significant different decrease of 6 in the intervention group (P = 0.003). The Incremental Cost-Effectiveness Ratio indicated that the cost per point reduction on the SADQH21 was £263.


Overall the behavioural therapy was found to improve mood and resulted in some encouraging savings in resource utilisation over the six months follow-up.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Aphasia, clinical evaluation, cognitive impairment, economic evaluation, health status
Schools/Departments: University of Nottingham, UK > Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences > School of Medicine > Division of Rehabilitation and Ageing
Identification Number:
Depositing User: Dziunka, Patricia
Date Deposited: 05 Apr 2018 10:29
Last Modified: 04 May 2020 16:58

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