[Accessed 18 January 2014]
Potential Cost-Effectiveness of a New Infant Tuberculosis Vaccine in South Africa – Implications for Clinical Trials: A Decision Analysis
Jared B. Ditkowsky, Kevin Schwartzman mail
Published: January 15, 2014
DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0083526 http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0083526
Novel tuberculosis vaccines are in varying stages of pre-clinical and clinical development. This study seeks to estimate the potential cost-effectiveness of a BCG booster vaccine, while accounting for costs of large-scale clinical trials, using the MVA85A vaccine as a case study for estimating potential costs. We conducted a decision analysis from the societal perspective, using a 10-year time frame and a 3% discount rate. We predicted active tuberculosis cases and tuberculosis-related costs for a hypothetical cohort of 960,763 South African newborns (total born in 2009). We compared neonatal vaccination with bacille Calmette-Guérin alone to vaccination with bacille Calmette-Guérin plus a booster vaccine at 4 months. We considered booster efficacy estimates ranging from 40% to 70%, relative to bacille Calmette-Guérin alone. We accounted for the costs of Phase III clinical trials. The booster vaccine was assumed to prevent progression to active tuberculosis after childhood infection, with protection decreasing linearly over 10 years. Trial costs were prorated to South Africa’s global share of bacille Calmette-Guérin vaccination. Vaccination with bacille Calmette-Guérin alone resulted in estimated tuberculosis-related costs of $89.91 million 2012 USD, and 13,610 tuberculosis cases in the birth cohort, over the 10 years. Addition of the booster resulted in estimated cost savings of $7.69–$16.68 million USD, and 2,800–4,160 cases averted, for assumed efficacy values ranging from 40%–70%. A booster tuberculosis vaccine in infancy may result in net societal cost savings as well as fewer active tuberculosis cases, even if efficacy is relatively modest and large scale Phase III studies are required.