Rationale and design of the health economics evaluation registry for remote follow-up: TARIFF

Europace. 2012 Nov;14(11):1661-5. doi: 10.1093/europace/eus093. Epub 2012 Apr 27.


Aims: The aims of the study are to develop a cost-minimization analysis from the hospital perspective and a cost-effectiveness analysis from the third payer standpoint, based on direct estimates of costs and QOL associated with remote follow-ups, using Merlin@home and Merlin.net, compared with standard ambulatory follow-ups, in the management of ICD and CRT-D recipients.

Methods and results: Remote monitoring systems can replace ambulatory follow-ups, sparing human and economic resources, and increasing patient safety. TARIFF is a prospective, controlled, observational study aimed at measuring the direct and indirect costs and quality of life (QOL) of all participants by a 1-year economic evaluation. A detailed set of hospitalized and ambulatory healthcare costs and losses of productivity that could be directly influenced by the different means of follow-ups will be collected. The study consists of two phases, each including 100 patients, to measure the economic resources consumed during the first phase, associated with standard ambulatory follow-ups, vs. the second phase, associated with remote follow-ups.

Conclusion: Remote monitoring systems enable caregivers to better ensure patient safety and the healthcare to limit costs. TARIFF will allow defining the economic value of remote ICD follow-ups for Italian hospitals, third payers, and patients. The TARIFF study, based on a cost-minimization analysis, directly comparing remote follow-up with standard ambulatory visits, will validate the cost effectiveness of the Merlin.net technology, and define a proper reimbursement schedule applicable for the Italian healthcare system.

Trial registration: NCT01075516.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Ambulatory Care / economics
  • Cardiac Resynchronization Therapy / adverse effects
  • Cardiac Resynchronization Therapy / economics*
  • Cardiac Resynchronization Therapy Devices / adverse effects
  • Cardiac Resynchronization Therapy Devices / economics*
  • Chi-Square Distribution
  • Cost Savings
  • Cost-Benefit Analysis
  • Defibrillators, Implantable / adverse effects
  • Defibrillators, Implantable / economics*
  • Electric Countershock / adverse effects
  • Electric Countershock / economics*
  • Electric Countershock / instrumentation
  • Health Care Costs*
  • Hospital Costs
  • Humans
  • Insurance, Health, Reimbursement
  • Italy
  • Models, Economic
  • Monitoring, Ambulatory / economics*
  • Monitoring, Ambulatory / instrumentation
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Prospective Studies
  • Quality of Life
  • Registries
  • Research Design*
  • Telemedicine / economics*
  • Telemedicine / instrumentation
  • Telemetry / economics*
  • Telemetry / instrumentation
  • Time Factors
  • Treatment Outcome

Associated data

  • ClinicalTrials.gov/NCT01075516