OBJECTIVE

To quantify the effect of early rescue surfactant administration techniques for preterm infants with respiratory distress syndrome (RDS) from a health care delivery system perspective.

METHODS

A cost-consequence model was developed based on previously published literature to compare the health economic impact of implementing early surfactant administration strategies vs standard surfactant administration via endotracheal intubation and mechanical ventilation (MV).

RESULTS

Early rescue surfactant treatment strategies are associated with a decrease in the number of patients requiring MV, cumulative MV days, and rate of neonatal complications. Total annual surfactant costs are higher than standard surfactant administration, but this is offset by savings in total hospital and complication costs.

CONCLUSIONS

This cost-consequence analysis suggests selective early rescue surfactant administration strategies are associated with a lower health care burden in premature infants with RDS.

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