Research Article: Cost-Effectiveness of Interventions to Promote Physical Activity: A Modelling Study

Date Published: July 14, 2009

Publisher: Public Library of Science

Author(s): Linda J. Cobiac, Theo Vos, Jan J. Barendregt, Nikos Demiris

Abstract: Linda Cobiac and colleagues model the costs and health outcomes associated with interventions to improve physical activity in the population, and identify specific interventions that are likely to be cost-saving.

Partial Text: Physical activity occurs during work, transport, domestic, and leisure-time activities. Too little physical activity increases the risks of ischaemic heart disease, stroke, colon cancer, breast cancer, and type 2 diabetes [1], as well as obesity [2] and falls in later life [3]. The World Health Organization recommends at least 30 minutes of regular, moderate-intensity physical activity on most days to reduce the risk of disease and injury [4].

Intervention to encourage an increase in physical activity participation is highly recommended in Australia. Potential reductions in costs of treating ischaemic heart disease, stroke, diabetes, breast cancer, and colon cancer mean that there is a high probability of cost-savings from a health sector perspective. Taken as a package of interventions, all six physical activity interventions could lead to a substantial improvement in population health at under AUS$50,000 per DALY.



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