Friday, April 19, 2024

The Office of Health Economics: Adult Vaccination Programmes Deliver Socio-economic Benefits up to 19 Times Initial Investment, According to New Report


‘First-of-its-kind’ study shows that adult immunisation programmes return up to 19 times their initial investment when the full spectrum of benefits is valued

The findings highlight the opportunity to ease pressures on health systems by adopting a prevention-first mindset that includes adult immunisation programmes

The report comes ahead of World Immunisation Week and reveals substantial variation between countries of the availability of evidence for valuing adult vaccination

 (BUSINESS WIRE)--A new report published today reveals that adult vaccination programmes can return up to 19 times their initial investment when the full spectrum of economic and societal benefits is valued. The 19x return is equivalent to up to USD 4,637 in net monetary benefits to society per individual full vaccination course.

The study, a first-of-its-kind analysis of adult immunisation programmes by the Office of Health Economics (OHE) and commissioned by IFPMA (1), looked at four adult vaccines across ten countries where they are available to determine the wider economic and social impact.

Focusing on vaccines that protect against influenza (flu), pneumococcal disease, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), and herpes zoster (shingles), the research looks at the delivery of vaccine programmes in countries that represent a range of healthcare systems, demographics, and vaccine schedules - Australia, Brazil, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Poland, South Africa, Thailand, and the United States.

The report concludes that the vaccination programmes deliver substantial returns on government investment through cost savings within healthcare systems and wider socio-economic benefits. Preventing illness reduces doctor and hospital visits, meaning valuable resources can be allocated elsewhere, and ensuring a healthy and active workforce throughout life can boost economic productivity.

The data also demonstrates that adult immunisation can deliver socio-economic returns proportional to childhood immunisation programmes (2). Despite this, access to adult vaccination is inconsistent around the world, with limited inclusion in routine immunisation schedules.

Professor Lotte Steuten, Deputy CEO of OHE, and co-author of the report, said:

“Increasing pressures on ailing healthcare systems, such as ageing populations, are driving an urgent need to shift to a prevention-first mindset. Our report sets out a compelling case for adult immunisation programmes playing a key role in the shift to prevention.

“Our findings show that costs are offset multiple times over by benefits to society when governments invest in adult immunisation programmes. These returns are realised through benefits to individuals, families, and communities, providing a clear call to action to countries not already implementing or expanding robust vaccination schedules.”

The researchers used an established vaccine value framework to gather evidence but discovered a lack of data across many elements. This finding, coupled with a lack of agreed methods for capturing some elements, means the positive returns shown are likely to be underestimates of the full value that adult vaccines bring to society.

The report has been released ahead of the WHO’s World Immunisation Week, and addressing such evidence gaps will be critical in meeting the ambition of the Immunization Agenda 2030. This includes a strategic priority to ensure that ‘all people benefit from recommended immunizations throughout the life-course’ and explicitly outlines the need for data guided implementation.

Laetitia Bigger, IFPMA Vaccines Policy Director, added:

“This important study widens the lens to demonstrate that adult vaccination programmes are delivering real benefits for health systems and societies across the globe.

“Vaccines are one of the most effective public health measures and can also be a powerful driver of more productive economies and resilient societies.

“It is critical that these benefits are better understood if we are to ensure that people who can benefit from adult immunisation programmes are able to access them.”

Maarten Postma, Professor in Pharmacoeconomics at the University of Groningen (Netherlands) and reviewer of the report’s methodology, commented:

“Assessing the value of adult immunisation provides policymakers with a clearer picture of the associated benefits and costs. This comprehensive report looked at four adult vaccines internationally and employed a rigorous methodological framework to assess their value."

(1) The International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and Associations (IFPMA) is the innovative pharmaceutical industry’s representative in official relations with the United Nations.

(2) Using the value-of-a-statistical-life approach, return on investment for 10 childhood vaccination programmes was 51.0 from 2011 to 2020 and 52.2 from 2021 to 2030 (Source:

- ENDS -

Notes to editors

About the report

The full report ‘The Socio-Economic Value of Adult Immunisation Programmes’ is available at:

About OHE

With over 60 years of expertise, the Office of Health Economics (OHE) is the world’s oldest independent health economics research organisation. Every day we work to improve health care through pioneering and innovative research, analysis, and education.

As a global thought leader and publisher in the economics of health, health care, and life sciences, we partner with Universities, Government, health systems and the pharmaceutical industry to research and respond to global health challenges.

As a government–recognised Independent Research Organisation and not–for–profit, our international reputation for the quality and independence of our research is at the forefront of all we do. OHE provides independent and pioneering resources, research and analyses in health economics, health policy and health statistics. Our work informs decision–making about health care and pharmaceutical issues at a global level.

All of our work is available for free online at


The International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and Associations (IFPMA) represents over 90 innovative pharmaceutical companies and associations around the world. Our industry’s almost three million employees discover, develop, and deliver medicines and vaccines that advance global health. Based in Geneva, IFPMA has official relations with the United Nations and contributes industry expertise to help the global health community improve the lives of people everywhere. For more information, visit


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For further details, including high-resolution photos, or to arrange a briefing or interview, please contact:

Tim Watson

Director of Marketing & Communications,

Office of Health Economics

T: +44 (0)7866 288456


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