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Arch Hellen Med, 27(1), January-February 2010, 88-94


Cost-effectiveness of prophylactic cervical cancer vaccination in Greece

Center for Health Services Management and Evaluation, Department of Nursing, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Athens, Greece

OBJECTIVES To estimate the cost-effectiveness (from the health care payer's perspective) of prophylactic cervical cancer screening and vaccination of Greek girls at the age of 12 years, compared with screening alone.

METHOD A Markov model was used to assess costs and consequences in the longer term. Input data for the model were obtained from various providers in the Greek private health sector, literature reviews, and expert opinion. Univariate sensitivity analysis was conducted to test the robustness of the results.

RESULTS Using a discount rate of 3% on both costs and outcomes, the analysis resulted in an ICER of €19,012 per QALY. Sensitivity analysis on key variables resulted in relatively small effects on the ICER, which in all cases but one remained below the European accepted value of €50,000 per QALY. The analysis also provided further outcome measures which cannot be ignored by those responsible for deciding on a general vaccination recommendation: 412 cancer cases and 95 deaths from cervical cancer could be prevented by vaccinating 12 year-old girls in Greece.

CONCLUSIONS When combined with current patterns of screening, prophylactic cervical cancer vaccination in Greek girls at the age of 12 years is very cost-effective. The results of this study (which to our knowledge is the first ever made in Greece) should not be ignored by decision-makers, and national health policy for the prevention of cervical cancer should include a targeted vaccination scheme.

Key words: Cervical cancer vaccination, Cost of cancer, Cost-effectiveness of cervical cancer vaccination.

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