Economic evaluation of nature-based interventions for mental and physical health


This study investigated the potential cost-effectiveness of ecotherapy, a nature-based intervention increasingly used for common mental health issues.

Despite its popularity, there’s a scarcity of data regarding its costs and benefits, hindering robust evaluations. Through a pragmatic literature review and value of information analysis, the study reveals promising prospects for ecotherapy’s cost-effectiveness in treating mild to moderate mental health problems. Notably, it suggests that even small shifts in anxiety and depression levels, as measured by the EQ-5D, can lead to significant quality of life improvements. Moreover, ecotherapy shows promise in generating social and wider returns on investment. However, the study underscores the necessity for further research to inform comprehensive cost-effectiveness assessments and enhance the case for ecotherapy’s inclusion in healthcare provision.

Piece of work undertaken in collaboration with Laura Bojke and Seb Hinde ( who are part of the Health economics, evaluation and equity team in the ARC.


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