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Bulletin of the World Health Organization

Print version ISSN 0042-9686


HINMAN, Alan R.; IRONS, Beryl; LEWIS, Merle  and  KANDOLA, Kami. Economic analyses of rubella and rubella vaccines: a global review. Bull World Health Organ [online]. 2002, vol.80, n.4, pp.264-270. ISSN 0042-9686.

OBJECTIVE: To investigate whether the incorporation of rubella vaccine into immunization programmes in developing countries is economically justified. METHODS: A MEDLINE search was conducted for articles published between 1970 and 2000 that dealt with economic analyses of rubella and rubella-containing vaccines. The Eastern Mediterranean, South-East Asia, and Africa regional Index Medicus databases and the LILACS database for Latin America and the Caribbean were also searched. FINDINGS: For developed countries, five cost- benefit analyses of rubella vaccine and five of measles-mumps-rubella vaccine as well as two cost-effectiveness analyses were found. For developing countries, five cost analyses and five cost-benefit analyses were found. All the cost-benefit analyses had a benefit:cost ratio greater than 1 and the cost-effectiveness studies indicated that rubella immunization was a cost-effective means of reducing the impact of congenital rubella syndrome. However, the methodologies were not standardized. CONCLUSION: The data support the inclusion of rubella vaccine in the immunization programmes of both developing and developed countries and indicate economic benefits comparable to those associated with hepatitis B vaccine and Haemophilus influenzae type b vaccine. More studies should be carried out on costs for care and immunization using standardized methodologies and locally obtained information.

Keywords : Rubella syndrome; Congenital [prevention and control]; Rubella vaccine [economics]; Measles-mumps-rubella vaccine [economics]; Immunization programs; Developed countries; Países en desarrollo; Cost-benefit analysis; Review literature.

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