Header

UZH-Logo

Maintenance Infos

Health economic research on vaccinations and immunisation practices--an introductory primer


Szucs, T D (2005). Health economic research on vaccinations and immunisation practices--an introductory primer. Vaccine, 23(17-18):2095-2103.

Abstract

The economic importance of vaccines lies partly in the burden of disease that can be avoided and partly in the competition for resources between vaccines and other interventions. Up to the 1980s only few economic evaluations had been carried out. Since then the confrontation of most countries with escalating health care costs and tighter budgets have awakened the interest in pharmacoeconomic analysis. Resources used to provide health care are vast but not limitless. When clinicians are asked to participate in decisions for large groups of patients (in a managed care context, in an institution, or at the level of local health authorities), the balance between consumption of resources and the benefits of an intervention is important. Clinicians may use cost-effectiveness and cost-benefit studies to inform such decisions (but not to make them). Because of differences in methods, the presentation of results, and country-specific parameters, economic evaluations of the same vaccination strategy by different groups may have divergent results. Vaccines differ from classical medicines in at least three ways: firstly, there is a longer tradition of economic evaluations for vaccines than for medicines. Some of the most earliest economic studies were carried out in the field of vaccines in the public health arena. Secondly, comparatively fewer central decision makers need to be convinced as compared to drugs. The reason for this being a more centralised process of recommending vaccines and vaccination policies. Thirdly, externalities are more relevant in the field of vaccines. Such externalities may be positive or negative. Positive externalities are present in the case where herd immunity prevents the spread of the disease in the community. We are now undoubtedly in an era of assessment and accountability for all new technologies in healthcare. However, sufficient economic data are still lacking to support the formulation of health policy and a particular challenge for the future is to conduct further health economic research on immunisation. Specific areas for such study include: effectiveness under field conditions (i.e., not under the conditions of a randomised controlled trial); the real value of economic production losses; the conditions for implementing novel immunization programmes; cost estimates for more ambitious immunization programmes; the economic benefits of combination vaccines. From this research, it will be important to disseminate the data and to adapt the findings to other countries. Nevertheless, the source of funding for research and its application in clinical trials programmes represent some of the practical problems faced by medical economics today within academia and the industry.

Abstract

The economic importance of vaccines lies partly in the burden of disease that can be avoided and partly in the competition for resources between vaccines and other interventions. Up to the 1980s only few economic evaluations had been carried out. Since then the confrontation of most countries with escalating health care costs and tighter budgets have awakened the interest in pharmacoeconomic analysis. Resources used to provide health care are vast but not limitless. When clinicians are asked to participate in decisions for large groups of patients (in a managed care context, in an institution, or at the level of local health authorities), the balance between consumption of resources and the benefits of an intervention is important. Clinicians may use cost-effectiveness and cost-benefit studies to inform such decisions (but not to make them). Because of differences in methods, the presentation of results, and country-specific parameters, economic evaluations of the same vaccination strategy by different groups may have divergent results. Vaccines differ from classical medicines in at least three ways: firstly, there is a longer tradition of economic evaluations for vaccines than for medicines. Some of the most earliest economic studies were carried out in the field of vaccines in the public health arena. Secondly, comparatively fewer central decision makers need to be convinced as compared to drugs. The reason for this being a more centralised process of recommending vaccines and vaccination policies. Thirdly, externalities are more relevant in the field of vaccines. Such externalities may be positive or negative. Positive externalities are present in the case where herd immunity prevents the spread of the disease in the community. We are now undoubtedly in an era of assessment and accountability for all new technologies in healthcare. However, sufficient economic data are still lacking to support the formulation of health policy and a particular challenge for the future is to conduct further health economic research on immunisation. Specific areas for such study include: effectiveness under field conditions (i.e., not under the conditions of a randomised controlled trial); the real value of economic production losses; the conditions for implementing novel immunization programmes; cost estimates for more ambitious immunization programmes; the economic benefits of combination vaccines. From this research, it will be important to disseminate the data and to adapt the findings to other countries. Nevertheless, the source of funding for research and its application in clinical trials programmes represent some of the practical problems faced by medical economics today within academia and the industry.

Statistics

Citations

19 citations in Web of Science®
22 citations in Scopus®
Google Scholar™

Altmetrics

Downloads

2 downloads since deposited on 10 Jun 2009
0 downloads since 12 months
Detailed statistics

Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Epidemiology, Biostatistics and Prevention Institute (EBPI)
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:2005
Deposited On:10 Jun 2009 15:28
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 13:15
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:0264-410X
Additional Information:Elsevier – Full text article
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.vaccine.2005.01.064
PubMed ID:15755578

Download

Preview Icon on Download
Filetype: PDF - Registered users only
Size: 1MB
View at publisher

TrendTerms

TrendTerms displays relevant terms of the abstract of this publication and related documents on a map. The terms and their relations were extracted from ZORA using word statistics. Their timelines are taken from ZORA as well. The bubble size of a term is proportional to the number of documents where the term occurs. Red, orange, yellow and green colors are used for terms that occur in the current document; red indicates high interlinkedness of a term with other terms, orange, yellow and green decreasing interlinkedness. Blue is used for terms that have a relation with the terms in this document, but occur in other documents.
You can navigate and zoom the map. Mouse-hovering a term displays its timeline, clicking it yields the associated documents.

Author Collaborations