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Volume 23, Number 6, 2018

Present challenges in cervical cancer prevention: Answers from cost-effectiveness analyses

Mireia Diaz, Silvia de Sanjosé, F. Xavier Bosch, Laia Bruni


Simulation models are commonly used to address important health policy issues that cannot be explored through experimental studies. These models are especially useful to determine a set of strategies that result in a good value for money (cost-effectiveness). Several mathematical models simulating the natural history of HPV and related diseases, especially cervical cancer, have been developed to calculate a relative effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of HPV vaccination and cervical cancer screening interventions. Virtually all cost-effectiveness analyses identify HPV vaccination programmes for preadolescent girls to be cost-effective, even for relatively low vaccination coverage rates. Routine vaccination of preadolescent girls is the primary target population for HPV vaccination as it shows to provide the greatest health impact. Cost-effectiveness analyses assessing other vaccine target groups are less conclusive. Adding additional age-cohorts would accelerate health benefits in some years, although cost-effectiveness becomes less favourable as age at vaccination increases. Including men in HPV vaccination programmes may be a less efficient strategy if done at the expense of female vaccination coverage for reducing the burden of HPV in the population. However, as the HPV vaccine price decreases, the cost-effectiveness of universal vaccination improves, becoming equally as efficient as female-only vaccination. Vaccine price is a decisive factor in the cost-effectiveness analyses. The lower the price, the greater the likelihood that vaccination groups other than the primary target would be considered cost-effective.

Signature: Rep Pract Oncol Radiother, 2018; 23(6) : 484-494

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