Validation of the Decision model of the Burden of Hearing loss Across the Lifespan (DeciBHAL) in Chile, India, and Nigeria.
Background: There is no published decision model for informing hearing health care resource allocation across the lifespan in low- and middle-income countries. We sought to validate the Decision model of the Burden of Hearing loss Across the Lifespan International (DeciBHAL-I) in Chile, India, and Nigeria. Methods: DeciBHAL-I simulates bilateral sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL) and conductive hearing loss (CHL) acquisition, SNHL progression, and hearing loss treatment. To inform model inputs, we identified setting-specific estimates including SNHL prevalence from the Global Burden of Disease (GBD) studies, acute otitis media (AOM) incidence and prevalence of otitis-media related CHL from a systematic review, and setting-specific pediatric and adult hearing aid use prevalence. We considered a coefficient of variance root mean square error (CV-RMSE) of ≤15% to indicate good model fit. Findings: The model-estimated prevalence of bilateral SNHL closely matched GBD estimates, (CV-RMSEs: 3.2-7.4%). Age-specific AOM incidences from DeciBHAL-I also achieved good fit (CV-RMSEs=5.0-7.5%). Model-projected chronic suppurative otitis media prevalence (1.5% in Chile, 4.9% in India, and 3.4% in Nigeria) was consistent with setting-specific estimates, and the incidence of otitis media-related CHL was calibrated to attain adequate model fit. DeciBHAL-projected adult hearing aid use in Chile (3.2-19.7% ages 65-85 years) was within the 95% confidence intervals of published estimates. Adult hearing aid prevalence from the model in India was 1.4-2.3%, and 1.1-1.3% in Nigeria, consistent with literature-based and expert estimates. Interpretation: DeciBHAL-I reasonably simulates hearing loss natural history, detection, and treatment in Chile, India, and Nigeria. Future cost-effectiveness analyses might use DeciBHAL-I to inform global hearing health policy. Funding: National Institutes of Health (3UL1-TR002553-03S3 and F30 DC019846).
Borre, ED; Ayer, A; Der, C; Ibekwe, T; Emmett, SD; Dixit, S; Shahid, M; Olusanya, B; Garg, S; Johri, M; Saunders, JE; Tucci, DL; Wilson, BS; Ogbuoji, O; Sanders Schmidler, GD
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