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Department of Health Economics (DHE)

Establishing a reference unit costs catalogue for the optimized evaluation and planning of mental healthcare in Vienna

Date: 2023-2025
Funding: WWTF (Wiener Wissenschafts-, Forschungs- und Technologiefonds)
Collaborator(s): Universidad Loyola Andaluciá, ES; Austrian Institute for Health Technology Assessment, AT; Gesundheit Österreich GmbH, AT
Advisory Board: Link zum Advisory Board (SAB)
Project team: STREAMLINE project team
Information: Judit Simon (PI), Michael Berger (Co-PI), Susanne Mayer (Co-PI), Timea Helter, Thomas Resch, Lazo Ilic

Around 18% of the Austrian population suffer from mental health problems, many with excess physical health burden. Covering their need for treatment has become a major public health challenge for the healthcare system. Recent demographic and societal developments further aggravate the access need to optimized, integrated mental healthcare services. The multi-disciplinary STREAMLINE project aims to map multi-sectoral mental health-related services and their activities in Vienna, and develop and make available their internationally comparable Reference Unit Costs (RUC) using state-of-the-art methods. Further, it will analyse policy relevant variations in their availability and costs including comparison to other Austrian regions. The project will serve as proof-of-concept and will be expendable in the future to other disease areas and jurisdictions to reduce wasteful medical expenditure through evidence-based value assessment.

Latest news/event:

STREAMLINE is one of eight WWTF-funded public health projects that runs between 01.04.2023 and 30.06.2023. The aim of the project is to facilitate future optimised and better integrated service provision, financing and evaluation for people with mental health diseases in Vienna.

A multi-disciplinary research team from the Department of Health Economics, Center for Public Health, Medical University of Vienna (lead), Austrian Public Health Institute, Austrian Institute for Health Technology Assessment and University of Loyola (Spain) will look at the availability, activity and affordability of existing treatment, care and support services for children, youth and adults in the health and social care sectors, in the education, employment and justice systems and those for patients and their carers locally.

Following standardised mapping and reference unit cost development for the identified services, evidence-informed policy recommendations for future planning and reimbursement will be drawn.

STREAMLINE is supported by a large multi-stakeholder Advisory Board including providers, payers, decision makers and persons with lived experiences either as patients or carers.

The SAB Kick-off meeting took place on the 13 June 2023 with a focus on presenting the background, aims and work plan of the project.