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Free Content Costs of admission for paediatric pneumonia in a setting of human immunodeficiency virus infection

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BACKGROUND: Pneumonia in South African children remains a major public health concern. The costs of hospital admission for pneumonia should be determined, especially where human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection is common.

OBJECTIVE: To determine the hospital costs of children (HIV-infected vs. non-HIV-infected) admitted for the management of pneumonia and compare them in the public and fee-for-service sectors.

METHODS: A retrospective review of paediatric admissions in 2007 was performed. Costs were determined for the public and fee-for-service sectors. Outcome measures included hospital mortality and comparative costs of admission.

RESULTS: There were 132 admissions in a public sector facility (67% HIV-infected), and 7882 in the fee-fors ervice sector (1.2% HIV-infected). Total mortality was respectively 25% in the public and 0.04% in the fee-forservice sectors. The mean cost for HIV-infected patients was respectively US$639.06 and US$10 540.04 in the public and fee-for-service sectors. For non-HIV-infected patients, the cost was respectively US$399.45 and US$3936.87. Length of stay for HIV-infected patients was longer by respectively 1.8 days and 5.7 days in the public sector among admissions to the ward and to the paediatric intensive care unit.

CONCLUSION: Admission for HIV-infected children with pneumonia costs significantly more in both sectors. Preventive strategies are needed.
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Document Type: Short Communication

Affiliations: 1: Department of Paediatrics and Child Health, Steve Biko Academic Hospital, Pretoria, South Africa 2: Outcomes Consultants, Pretoria, South Africa 3: Biostatistics Unit, Medical Research Council of South Africa, Pretoria, South Africa

Publication date: December 1, 2011

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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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