Impact of childhood atopic dermatitis and its financial cost to a Singaporean family
Foo, Priscilla Yan Ru
Date of Issue2017-11-23
Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine (LKCMedicine)
Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine, Centre for Population Health Sciences
Introduction The high prevalence rate of childhood atopic dermatitis (AD) is a growing concern in Singapore due to its financial burden and negative influences on families. There is a lack of literature in understanding the family impact and financial burden of childhood AD. Therefore, this study explores the extent to which childhood AD impacts the family and its financial burden. Method A total of 299 parents were recruited in the study. Questionnaires were used to record out-of-pocket expenditures and assess family impact through a scoring system in families whose children have AD. Results Significant differences was found in mean dermatitis family impact (DFI) score depending on degree of severity (p<0.0001). There were no significant differences between the average out-of-pocket expenses of mild (SGD$53), moderate (SGD$62) and severe AD (SGD$82). Correlations between out-of-pocket expenses and DFI score was revealed to be significant, p-value<0.001, 𝜌 = 0.54. Discussion This study provided an understanding on the socio-economic burden on a family due to childhood AD and is useful as a reference for future economic evaluation studies. Future studies about spending behaviour by different demographics group would be useful to policymakers for better allocation of resources to reduce financial burden. Awareness about ceiling effects should be present when analysing data on self-reported family impact. Conclusion Childhood AD clearly impacts family, especially in the psychosocial aspect. Results suggested that out-of-pocket expenses incurred as a result of childhood AD may impose financial stress on families and therefore have an influence on family impact.
Final Year Project (FYP)
Nanyang Technological University