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Free Content Modeling the economic benefits of better TB vaccines

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OBJECTIVE: To describe the economic benefits of a better tuberculosis (TB) vaccine by modeling prevented TB medical spending and lost productivity throughout the world.

DESIGN: One model is based on benefits obtained from reducing the impact of TB on health spending. An alternative model is based on minimizing the impact of TB on health spending and lost productivity due to death and disability. Both models are applied to various world populations based on secondary data.

RESULTS: In terms of avoided medical spending, preventing 100% of the TB risk in a single individual is estimated to be worth from $38 for males in formerly socialist countries to $0.23 for children in Asia. More than 1 billion people would reckon their expected medical savings to exceed $25.00 if they received a 75% effective vaccine of 10 years’ duration. Preventing lost productivity is worth substantially more throughout the world.

CONCLUSIONS: Improved TB vaccines would be of substantial immediate financial value to most of the populations of the world, including the poorest. The scientific uncertainties surrounding the development of a better vaccine could be a larger obstacle than investor uncertainty over whether a vaccine would be profitable.
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Keywords: costs; demand; economics; epidemiology; tuberculosis; vaccine

Document Type: Regular Paper

Affiliations: Department of Population and Family Health Sciences, Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland, USA

Publication date: 2001-11-01

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  • The International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease publishes articles on all aspects of lung health, including public health-related issues such as training programmes, cost-benefit analysis, legislation, epidemiology, intervention studies and health systems research. The IJTLD is dedicated to the continuing education of physicians and health personnel and the dissemination of information on tuberculosis and lung health world-wide.

    Certain IJTLD articles are selected for translation into French, Spanish, Chinese or Russian. They are available on the Union website

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