Global maternal Strep B immunization program may save millions of dollars in healthcare costs


A worldwide maternal immunization program for group B Streptococcus – Strep B – would save tens of millions of {dollars} in healthcare prices by decreasing dying and incapacity, a group led by researchers from the London College of Hygiene & Tropical Medication (LSHTM) has discovered.

Nonetheless, the analysis, printed in PLOS Medication, means that with out tiered pricing equitable entry to life-saving vaccines would in all probability not be achieved.

A number of Strep B vaccines are at the moment beneath improvement, and the analysis group’s evaluation of the affect and worth of a world vaccination program estimates this might avert over 200,000 circumstances and greater than 31,000 deaths, and scale back incapacity in kids.

Strep B can infect pregnant girls and their infants, inflicting sepsis and meningitis in newborns, and typically resulting in dying or incapacity. It’s linked to elevated dangers of stillbirth and preterm births. As vaccines get nearer to approval, a world financial analysis of vaccination will inform funding choices in additional vaccine improvement in addition to information honest financing and pricing.

Dr Simon Procter of the London College of Hygiene & Tropical Medication and colleagues developed a mannequin to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of Group Strep B (GBS) vaccines in 140 million pregnant girls in 183 international locations in 2020. They used latest world estimates of the well being burden of Strep B in pregnant girls and their kids and estimated prices to healthcare techniques, calculating quality-adjusted life years misplaced because of toddler mortality and long-term incapacity.

Based mostly on the World Well being Group’s printed checklist of most popular options for a Strep B vaccine, the group assumed that the vaccine would forestall an infection in 80% of girls vaccinated, and that ladies receiving at the very least 4 antenatal visits would get vaccinated. They assumed a price of $50 a dose in excessive earnings international locations, $15 in upper-middle earnings and $3.50 in low- and lower-middle earnings international locations. Vaccination might avert 127,000 early-onset and 87,300 late-onset toddler iGBS circumstances, 31,100 deaths, 17,900 circumstances of average and extreme neurodevelopmental impairment, and 23,000 stillbirths.

The research is proscribed by an absence of some knowledge, corresponding to on the affect of Step B on health-related high quality of life and long-term prices of incapacity, nevertheless it estimates {that a} 1-dose vaccine program might value $1.7 billion globally, whereas saving $385 million in healthcare prices. The group warning that regional sensitivities to vaccine costs might have an effect on coverage choices and that tiered vaccine pricing would allow equitable entry.

By decreasing extreme GBS infections, an efficient maternal GBS vaccine deployed worldwide might forestall tens of hundreds of new child deaths and stillbirths annually. Our findings recommend maternal vaccination towards GBS might be cost-effective in most international locations, and we hope it will encourage the additional funding wanted to convey GBS vaccines to market.”

Dr Simon Procter, London College of Hygiene & Tropical Medication

The analysis was supported by funding from the Invoice & Melinda Gates Basis.


Journal reference:

Procter, S. R., et al. (2023). Maternal immunisation towards Group B Streptococcus: A worldwide evaluation of well being affect and cost-effectiveness. PLOS Medication.

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