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Vaccine. 2005 Aug 31;23(37):4610-8.

Financial requirements of immunisation programmes in developing countries: a 2004-2014 perspective.

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  • 1Smart Pharma Consulting, 1 rue Houdart de Lamotte, 75015 Paris, France.


Vaccines are a key contributor to public health, especially in developing countries. Despite numerous demonstrations of the cost-effectiveness of immunisation, vaccines spending accounted for only 1.7% of the total pharmaceutical market in 2002, when UNICEF estimated that 34 million children were not reached by routine immunisation, most of them in developing countries. Several international organizations or initiatives, like the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation (GAVI), have defined a long-term goal of universal immunisation in developing countries. There is an urgent need to estimate the financial resources required to meet this goal. The objective of this study was to anticipate the funding needs for childhood immunisation in developing countries over the 2004-2014 period. The study scope includes all the 75 countries eligible for support from GAVI, and covers existing vaccines that are considered as a priority for GAVI (DTP (diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis), hepatitis B, Haemophilus influenzae type b (as a stand alone presentation or in combination with DTP) and yellow fever) as well as future vaccines (meningitis A and C, rotavirus, human papilloma virus (HPV), malaria, Streptococcus pneumoniae and tuberculosis) likely to be available within the 10-year period. We developed a methodology to estimate the number of doses required, based on disease prevalence and incidence, target populations, introduction dates of new vaccines, coverage dynamics and dosing regimen. The introduction price and price evolution of vaccines over time were modelled, taking into account the type of vaccine, the expected return on investment from vaccine manufacturers and the competitive landscape. Non-vaccine costs (capital costs and non-vaccine recurrent costs) were estimated based on the number of people immunised and number of doses dispensed, using available case studies as a reference. According to the optimal scenario that would consider the provision of all vaccines to all relevant developing countries as soon as they are available, funding requirements to cover the associated total costs over the 10-year period were estimated to be about US$ 30 billion. Vaccines-related costs represent the largest share, with estimated costs of US$ 21 billion (among which 18 billion for new vaccines), the remaining needs being split between capital costs and other recurrent costs. Accounting for the main imponderables (such as delay in vaccines launch compared to industry plans) as well as probable phasing of vaccine introduction in countries, the total costs of immunisation would be reduced to US$ 14-17 billion over the same period. Vaccines-related costs represent the largest share (US$ 7.1-9.3 billion, among which 4.3-6.5 billion for new vaccines). This study advocates for the anticipation of the substantial financial resources needed to (a) purchase and introduce these vaccines in the developing countries in order to reduce the time lag between availability in industrialised and developing countries; and (b) stimulate vaccine researchers and manufacturers to continue research and development of much needed vaccines for the developing world.

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