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Article   |    
Estimating Clozapine's Cost to the Nation
Kenneth G. Terkelsen; René C. Grosser
Psychiatric Services 1990; doi:
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The authors thank Kevin Conley, Beverly Briggs, and Kenneth Mort of the New York State Office of Mental Health for assistance in data analysis; Robert Michels, M.D., Richard H. McCarthy, Ph.D., M.D., and Tom Bromley for comments on earlier versions of this paper; and the New York State Office of Mental Health Bureau of Planning Assistance and Coordination, John Hornik Ph.D., director, and the Bureau of Evaluation and Survey Research, David Shern, Ph.D., director, for access to survey data files.

New York Hospital-Cornell Medical Center, Westchester Division, 21 Bloomingdale Road, White Plains, New York 10605

Needs Assessment Unit of the New York State Office of Mental Health in Albany

1990 by the American Psychiatric Association

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Clozapine, an effective but expensive drug treatment for patients with severe, chronic schizophrenia who are unresponsive to conventional antipsychotics, is associated with a high risk of agranulocytosis, which is sometimes fatal. Weekly blood tests to detect evidence of this side effect are required. To estimate the number of potential candidates for this treatment and the national cost of administering the drug to this population, the authors used data from three recent patient surveys conducted in New York State. Depending on the criteria used to exclude unsuitable candidates, between 133,000 and 189,000 individuals will be eligible for treatment with clozapine nationally at a cost of $1.2 to $1.7 billion annually.

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