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Breakeven, cost benefit, cost effectiveness, and willingness to pay for web-based versus face-to-face education delivery for health professionals.

Maloney S, Haas R, Keating JL, Molloy E, Jolly B, Sims J, Morgan P, Haines T - J. Med. Internet Res. (2012)

Bottom Line: Data were collected on learning outcomes including participation, satisfaction, knowledge acquisition, and change in practice, and combined with costs, savings, and benefits, to enable a break-even analysis from the perspective of the provider, cost-effectiveness analysis from the perspective of the health service, and cost-benefit analysis from the perspective of the participant.Cost-effectiveness analyses from the perspective of the health service and cost-benefit analysis from the perspective of the participant favored face-to-face education, although the outcomes were contingent on the sensitivity analysis applied (eg, the fee structure used).In the presence of relatively equivocal results for comparisons from other stakeholder perspectives, it is likely that providers would prefer to deliver education via a Web-based medium.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML - PubMed

Affiliation: Monash University, Melbourne, Australia. stephen.maloney@monash.edu

ABSTRACT

Background: The introduction of Web-based education and open universities has seen an increase in access to professional development within the health professional education marketplace. Economic efficiencies of Web-based education and traditional face-to-face educational approaches have not been compared under randomized controlled trial conditions.

Objective: To compare costs and effects of Web-based and face-to-face short courses in falls prevention education for health professionals.

Methods: We designed two short courses to improve the clinical performance of health professionals in exercise prescription for falls prevention. One was developed for delivery in face-to-face mode and the other for online learning. Data were collected on learning outcomes including participation, satisfaction, knowledge acquisition, and change in practice, and combined with costs, savings, and benefits, to enable a break-even analysis from the perspective of the provider, cost-effectiveness analysis from the perspective of the health service, and cost-benefit analysis from the perspective of the participant.

Results: Face-to-face and Web-based delivery modalities produced comparable outcomes for participation, satisfaction, knowledge acquisition, and change in practice. Break-even analysis identified the Web-based educational approach to be robustly superior to face-to-face education, requiring a lower number of enrollments for the program to reach its break-even point. Cost-effectiveness analyses from the perspective of the health service and cost-benefit analysis from the perspective of the participant favored face-to-face education, although the outcomes were contingent on the sensitivity analysis applied (eg, the fee structure used).

Conclusions: The Web-based educational approach was clearly more efficient from the perspective of the education provider. In the presence of relatively equivocal results for comparisons from other stakeholder perspectives, it is likely that providers would prefer to deliver education via a Web-based medium.

Trial registration: Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry (ACTRN): 12610000135011; http://www.anzctr.org.au/trial_view.aspx?id=335135 (Archived by WebCite at http://www.webcitation.org/668POww4L).

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Savings versus costs for enrollment, with savings set at AUD $250 per participant and maximum class size of 20 participants.
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figure3: Savings versus costs for enrollment, with savings set at AUD $250 per participant and maximum class size of 20 participants.

Mentions: Figure 3 presents the relationship between the costs and savings, for the primary scenario for face-to-face and Web-based delivery. Table 3 presents the fixed and variable costs considered in this analysis. Table 4 presents a sensitivity analysis, exploring the impact of variations in costs and savings. The break-even point for the primary Web-based scenario was obtained at 7 participants, whereas the primary scenario with the face-to-face delivery returned multiple break-even points (Table 5). Multiple break-even points occur in some of the sensitivity analyses when recurring fixed costs are incurred as a class reaches its enrollment capacity, causing the course to once again run at a loss until the new break-even point is reached as enrollments increase. This particular relationship, with the creation of multiple break-even points, is presented graphically for the face-to-face delivery approach in Figure 3.


Breakeven, cost benefit, cost effectiveness, and willingness to pay for web-based versus face-to-face education delivery for health professionals.

Maloney S, Haas R, Keating JL, Molloy E, Jolly B, Sims J, Morgan P, Haines T - J. Med. Internet Res. (2012)

Savings versus costs for enrollment, with savings set at AUD $250 per participant and maximum class size of 20 participants.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License 1 - License 2
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3376523&req=5

figure3: Savings versus costs for enrollment, with savings set at AUD $250 per participant and maximum class size of 20 participants.
Mentions: Figure 3 presents the relationship between the costs and savings, for the primary scenario for face-to-face and Web-based delivery. Table 3 presents the fixed and variable costs considered in this analysis. Table 4 presents a sensitivity analysis, exploring the impact of variations in costs and savings. The break-even point for the primary Web-based scenario was obtained at 7 participants, whereas the primary scenario with the face-to-face delivery returned multiple break-even points (Table 5). Multiple break-even points occur in some of the sensitivity analyses when recurring fixed costs are incurred as a class reaches its enrollment capacity, causing the course to once again run at a loss until the new break-even point is reached as enrollments increase. This particular relationship, with the creation of multiple break-even points, is presented graphically for the face-to-face delivery approach in Figure 3.

Bottom Line: Data were collected on learning outcomes including participation, satisfaction, knowledge acquisition, and change in practice, and combined with costs, savings, and benefits, to enable a break-even analysis from the perspective of the provider, cost-effectiveness analysis from the perspective of the health service, and cost-benefit analysis from the perspective of the participant.Cost-effectiveness analyses from the perspective of the health service and cost-benefit analysis from the perspective of the participant favored face-to-face education, although the outcomes were contingent on the sensitivity analysis applied (eg, the fee structure used).In the presence of relatively equivocal results for comparisons from other stakeholder perspectives, it is likely that providers would prefer to deliver education via a Web-based medium.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML - PubMed

Affiliation: Monash University, Melbourne, Australia. stephen.maloney@monash.edu

ABSTRACT

Background: The introduction of Web-based education and open universities has seen an increase in access to professional development within the health professional education marketplace. Economic efficiencies of Web-based education and traditional face-to-face educational approaches have not been compared under randomized controlled trial conditions.

Objective: To compare costs and effects of Web-based and face-to-face short courses in falls prevention education for health professionals.

Methods: We designed two short courses to improve the clinical performance of health professionals in exercise prescription for falls prevention. One was developed for delivery in face-to-face mode and the other for online learning. Data were collected on learning outcomes including participation, satisfaction, knowledge acquisition, and change in practice, and combined with costs, savings, and benefits, to enable a break-even analysis from the perspective of the provider, cost-effectiveness analysis from the perspective of the health service, and cost-benefit analysis from the perspective of the participant.

Results: Face-to-face and Web-based delivery modalities produced comparable outcomes for participation, satisfaction, knowledge acquisition, and change in practice. Break-even analysis identified the Web-based educational approach to be robustly superior to face-to-face education, requiring a lower number of enrollments for the program to reach its break-even point. Cost-effectiveness analyses from the perspective of the health service and cost-benefit analysis from the perspective of the participant favored face-to-face education, although the outcomes were contingent on the sensitivity analysis applied (eg, the fee structure used).

Conclusions: The Web-based educational approach was clearly more efficient from the perspective of the education provider. In the presence of relatively equivocal results for comparisons from other stakeholder perspectives, it is likely that providers would prefer to deliver education via a Web-based medium.

Trial registration: Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry (ACTRN): 12610000135011; http://www.anzctr.org.au/trial_view.aspx?id=335135 (Archived by WebCite at http://www.webcitation.org/668POww4L).

Show MeSH