Cost of treatment and prevention of Haemophilus influenzae type b disease. An international perspective.
On the basis of immunogenicity and protective efficacy studies, 4 Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) conjugate vaccines have been licensed for administration to infants and children. Population based studies of Hib disease from Australia, Chile, Finland, Gambia, Israel, Switzerland, UK and US show that the relative and absolute incidence of Hib disease varies significantly. These differences in Hib epidemiology, and associated sequelae and hospital costs affect the cost-benefit analysis of preventive vaccination, necessitating unique calculations for each country. Published papers on the cost of Hib disease and the cost-benefit relationship of Hib vaccination have been based primarily on reports from the US, but more recently also on studies from Australia, Finland, Israel, Switzerland, UK, Sweden and Chile. All studies to date have produced favourable cost-benefit ratios. The implementation of Hib vaccination has led to the virtual disappearance of Hib disease in some of these countries. The lessons gained from these analyses are instructive not only for better understanding of the epidemiology of Hib disease, but also as a template for assessing the cost-benefit ratio of the implementation of preventive vaccination for other diseases.
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