Cost-effectiveness of digital cataract assessment

J. Dimock, L. D. Robman, C. A. McCarty, H. R. Taylor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: The aim of this study was to compare costs of digital photograph grading with that of film-based, human grading of the lens in epidemiological studies involving cataract assessment. Methods: Cost-effectiveness was measured by establishing the number of participants with ungradeable images and incorporating these lost data into the overall cost per participant for each study. Results: The digital grading system cost was A$105 000 with operating costs of $2.81 per participant, with 99.4% effectiveness. The film-based, human grading set-up costs were $43 000 with operating costs of $18.49 per participant and 90% effectiveness. After examining 3500 people the use of the digital equipment becomes cost-beneficial. Conclusions: The high costs of setting up a digital cataract grading system are offset by the low running costs, less ungradeable images and greater accuracy over the duration of a large scale ophthalmic epidemiological study.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)208-210
Number of pages3
JournalAustralian and New Zealand Journal of Ophthalmology
Issue number3-4
Publication statusPublished - 22 Sept 1999


  • Cataract
  • Cost-effectiveness
  • Digital equipment
  • Epidemiology

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