Economic burden of rotavirus diarrhea in Thailand: Report from a pilot study on rotavirus vaccination

Rochanathimoke, O., Riewpaiboon, A., Tharmaphornpilas, P., Jiamsiri, S., Thavorncharoensap, M. & Postma, M. J., 21-Jan-2019, In : Vaccine. 37, 4, p. 587-594 8 p.

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  • Economic burden of rotavirus diarrhea in Thailand: Report from a pilot study on rotavirus vaccination

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  • Onwipa Rochanathimoke
  • Arthorn Riewpaiboon
  • Piyanit Tharmaphornpilas
  • Suchada Jiamsiri
  • Montarat Thavorncharoensap
  • Maarten J Postma

BACKGROUND: Rotavirus diarrhea is the leading cause of morbidity and mortality in young children in both developed and developing countries. Hospitalization costs are a significant burden of both governments and households. The objective of this study was to estimate the economic burden associated with the hospitalization of children with non-rotavirus and rotavirus diarrhea in two provinces in Thailand.

METHOD: A prospective incidence-based cost-of-illness study was conducted on children under five years old with acute diarrhea who had been admitted to public hospitals in two provinces during October 2012 and June 2013. Caregivers were interviewed to estimate costs from a societal perspective at 2014 values. Stool samples were examined for rotavirus antigens. Multivariate regression analysis was used to assess the relationship of predictor variables to costs. Annual economic burden of rotavirus hospitalization was estimated by multiplying the number of hospitalized children and the hospitalization cost per episode. The costs were converted to international dollars (I$) using purchasing power parity (PPP) (1 USD = 12.36 baht for the year 2014).

RESULTS: Seven hundred and eighty-eight cases of acute diarrhea were included in the analysis. Of the total, one hundred and ninety-seven (25%) were detected as being rotavirus positive. Total societal costs of inpatient care per episode were 822.68 USD (10,165 Baht). The average costs of children with and without rotavirus were 903.39 USD (11,162 Baht) and 795.40 USD (9,827 Baht), respectively. Based on the multiple regression analysis, rotavirus infection, severity, and younger age were significantly associated with the higher costs.

CONCLUSION: Diarrhea, rotavirus diarrhea in particular, represents of a substantial economic burden in the society in Thailand. The accurate estimates that societal costs of the rotavirus diarrhea hospitalizations provide valuable input for considering a preventive program.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)587-594
Number of pages8
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 21-Jan-2019

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