We conducted a cost of illness study to assess the economic burden of pediatric enteric fever (typhoid and paratyphoid) in Bangladesh. Results can inform public health policies to prevent enteric fever.
The study was conducted at 2 pediatric health facilities in Dhaka. For the patient and caregiver’s perspective, we administered questionnaires on costs incurred from illness onset until the survey dates to caregivers of patients with blood culture positive cases at enrollment and 6 weeks later to estimate the direct medical, direct nonmedical, and indirect costs. From the perspective of the health care provider, we collected data on quantities and prices of resources used by the 2 hospitals to estimate the direct medical economic costs to treat a case of enteric fever. We collected costs in Bangladeshi takas and converted them into 2018 US dollars. We multiplied the unit cost per procedure by the frequency of procedures in the surveillance case cohort to calculate the average cost per case.
Among the 1772 patients from whom we collected information, the median cost of illness per case of enteric fever from the patient and caregiver perspective was US $64.03 (IQR: US $33.90 –$173.48). Median direct medical and nonmedical costs per case were 3% of annual labor income across the sample. From the perspective of the healthcare provider, the average direct medical cost per case was US $58.64 (range: US $37.25 at Hospital B, US $73.27 at Hospital A).
Our results show substantial economic burden of enteric fever in Bangladesh, with higher costs for patients receiving inpatient care. As antimicrobial resistance increases globally, the cost of illness could increase, due to more expensive and potent drugs required for treatment.
Click here to read the article, published in Clinical Infectious Diseases.