Cost-Effectiveness and Long-Term Savings of the Bright Bodies Intervention for Childhood Obesity

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date



Value in health : the journal of the International Society for Pharmacoeconomics and Outcomes Research




OBJECTIVE: To estimate the cost and cost-effectiveness of Bright Bodies, a high-intensity, family-based intervention demonstrated to improve BMI among children with obesity in a randomized controlled trial. METHODS: We developed a microsimulation model to project 10-year BMI trajectories of 8-16 year-old children with obesity using data from National Longitudinal Surveys and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention growth charts and validated the model using data from the Bright Bodies trial and a follow-up study. We used the trial data to estimate the average reduction in BMI per person-year over 10 years and the incremental costs of Bright Bodies, compared with traditional clinical weight management (control), from a health system perspective in 2020 US dollars. Using results from studies of Medical Expenditure Panel Survey data, we projected long-term obesity-related medical expenditure. RESULTS: In the primary analysis, assuming depreciating effects post-intervention, Bright Bodies is expected to achieve an average reduction in BMI of 1.67 kg/m (95% Uncertainty Interval: 1.43-1.94) per person-year over 10 years compared with control. The incremental intervention cost of Bright Bodies was $360 ($292-$421) per person compared with the clinical control. However, savings in obesity-related health care expenditure offset these costs and the expected cost-savings of Bright Bodies is $1,126 ($689-$1,693) per person over 10-years. The projected time to achieving cost savings compared with clinical control was 3.58 (2.63-5.17) years. CONCLUSIONS: While resource-intensive, our findings suggest Bright Bodies is cost-saving compared with clinical control by averting future obesity-related health care costs among children with obesity.


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