Back to Journals » Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management » Volume 2 » Issue 2

Cost-benefit analysis of influenza vaccination in a public healthcare unit

Authors Giorgio L Colombo, Antonio Ferro, Marta Vinci, Maria Zordan, Giulio Serra

Published 15 June 2006 Volume 2006:2(2) Pages 219—226

Giorgio L Colombo1, Antonio Ferro2, Marta Vinci1, Maria Zordan2, Giulio Serra1


1S.A.V.E. Studi Analisi Valutazioni Economiche, Milano, Italia; 2Unità Locale Socio Sanitaria ULSS n°17, Regione Veneto, Italia


Objective: Estimate the costs and benefits of influenza vaccination in a group of employees of an Italian District Health Authority, Unità Locale Socio Sanitaria (ULSS), to define a scheme of an economic evaluation to be used for other vaccination strategies.

Design: In an observational study conducted from December 2002 to April 2003, 107 ULSS employees, voluntarily vaccinated, were compared with 107 nonvaccinated ULSS employees matched for age, sex, and job category. The outcome of cost-benefit analysis was evaluated by checking personnel department records about absences from work and their causes, including influenza. Costs and benefits of the influenza vaccination from the ULSS point of view were calculated.

Results: The influenza vaccination strategy reduced absences from work by 23% and decreased the loss of working days by 30% and related cost. This difference is not significative. The ratio vaccination benefits/cost was €4.2. The advantage of vaccination is confirmed by sensitivity analysis performed on the mean cost of a working day, which showed that the benefit-cost ratio ranged from €4.5 to €11.7.

Conclusions: The results suggest that the influenza vaccination strategy in our sample of people was cost-saving. The economic evaluation used in this study could also be used for other vaccination strategies and in other settings.


Keywords: economic evaluation, influenza vaccination strategy, observational study

Download Article [PDF]