Economic Benefits of Immunization for 10 Pathogens in 94 Low- and Middle-Income Countries From 2011 to 2030 Using Cost-of-Illness and Value-of-Statistical-Life Approaches
So Yoon Sim
Gatien de Broucker
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Objectives Vaccination has prevented millions of deaths and cases of disease in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). During the Decade of Vaccines (2011-2020), international organizations, including the World Health Organization and Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, focused on new vaccine introduction and expanded coverage of existing vaccines. As Gavi, other organizations, and country governments look to the future, we aimed to estimate the economic benefits of immunization programs made from 2011 to 2020 and potential gains in the future decade. Methods We used estimates of cases and deaths averted by vaccines against 10 pathogens in 94 LMICs to estimate the economic value of immunization. We applied 3 approaches—cost of illness averted (COI), value of statistical life (VSL), and value of statistical life-year (VSLY)—to estimate observable and unobservable economic benefits between 2011 and 2030. Results From 2011 to 2030, immunization would avert $1510.4 billion ($674.3-$2643.2 billion) (2018 USD) in costs of illness in the 94 modeled countries, compared with the counterfactual of no vaccination. Using the VSL approach, immunization would generate $3436.7 billion ($1615.8-$5657.2 billion) in benefits. Applying the VSLY approach, $5662.7 billion ($2547.2-$9719.4) in benefits would be generated. Conclusion Vaccination has generated significant economic benefits in LMICs in the past decade. To reach predicted levels of economic benefits, countries and international donor organizations need to meet coverage projections outlined in the Gavi Operational Forecast. Estimates generated using the COI, VSL, or VSLY approach may be strategically used by donor agencies, decision makers, and advocates to inform investment cases and advocacy campaigns.