Researchers say the introduction of meningitis C vaccine into the UK has not only reduced the incidence of the disease in children and young people, but has done so cost-effectively. Researchers assessed the cost-effectiveness of the meningitis C campaign in young people up to the age of 19.
Before the immunisation programme's introduction in December 1998, meningitis C affected approximately 1,190 children resulting in at least 88 deaths each year. The researchers say the annual cost to the health service of treating these cases was around Ģ4.88 million. The team calculated that the campaign would prevent 9,980 cases of meningitis C and 666 deaths over the cohort's lifetime, resulting in almost 23,000 discounted life years saved. That saving would avoid costs of about Ģ29 million in treatment and control.
They estimated the campaign would cost between Ģ189 million and Ģ261 million, depending on the price of the vaccine, and that the cost per life year saved over the entire programme would be Ģ7,657. The researchers conclude that the meningitis C vaccination campaign is succeeding in reducing the incidence of the disease in the targeted age groups in a cost-effective manner.