Lesson

Cost effectiveness

Injury-prevention programmes are very cost effective. Several studies have shown that the return on investment is high. In New Zealand, the national insurer (the Accident Compensation Corporation) has documented a return on investment of NZD 8.20 for every dollar spent on injury-prevention programmes. 28 A nationwide rollout of the FIFA 11+ injury-prevention programme (rebranded as the “ACC SportsSmart Warm Up”) is currently underway across the four major sporting codes: football, rugby union, rugby league and netball.

In New Zealand, approximately 3,000 ACL reconstructions are funded by the ACC every year. The direct cost of these injuries (including diagnosis, surgical treatment and rehabilitation) has been estimated at approximately NZD 50 million. The indirect costs (including loss of productivity and the treatment of post-traumatic osteoarthritis) may contribute a further NZD 100 million annually. Given that injury-prevention programmes like the FIFA11+ have been shown to reduce the risk of ACL injury by about 50%, it is easy to see the financial benefit. Given this example, a successful nationwide rollout of the FIFA 11+ could save the ACC NZD 75 million per year in ACL-related costs alone.