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Free Content A cost-benefit analysis of scaling up tuberculosis control in India

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OBJECTIVES: To measure the economic costs and benefits of scaling up tuberculosis (TB) control under the Revised National Tuberculosis Control Programme (RNTCP) in India.

DESIGN: Modelling based on country-level programme and epidemiological data from 1997 to 2006.

RESULTS: The scale-up of TB control in India has resulted in a total health benefit of 29.2 million disability-adjusted life years (DALYs), including 1.3 million deaths averted. In 2006, the burden of TB measured in terms of DALYs lost would have been 1.8 times higher in the absence of the programme. The total gain in economic well-being from TB control is estimated at US$88.1 billion over the 1997–2006 10-year period. Total public expenditure on TB control over this period amounted to US$768 million, with the RNTCP accounting for US$299 million and other health sector costs accounting for US$469 million. The cost of TB control averaged just US$26 per DALY gained over 1997–2006 and generated a return of US$115 per dollar spent.

CONCLUSIONS: The scale-up of TB control has been a very cost-effective strategy for improving the health status of India's population, while the return on investment has been exceptional from a societal perspective.

Keywords: India; cost-benefit analysis; programme evaluation; tuberculosis

Document Type: Regular Paper

Affiliations: 1: World Health Organization, New Delhi, India 2: Office of the World Health Organization Representative to India, New Delhi, India 3: Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India, New Delhi, India 4: HIV/AIDS, TB, Malaria and Neglected Tropical Diseases, World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland

Publication date: 2011-03-01

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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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