Rotavirus vaccinations saved the US at least $1.2B in medical costs, study shows

Vaccination against rotavirus helped the United States save more than $1 billion in direct medical costs from 2008 to 2013, according to a study published in Journal of the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society.

Researchers examined data from community and academic hospitals in 26 states, identifying hospitalizations for acute gastroenteritis among children under 5 years old. They studied the periods before and after vaccination licensure, which occurred in 2006.

Here are three study insights:

1. Diarrhea hospitalizations decreased by between 31 percent and 55 percent from 2008 to 2013.

2. Over the six-year period, U.S. children avoided more than 380,000 hospitalizations for severe diarrhea.

3. The country saw direct medical cost savings from avoided hospitalizations to the tune of $1.2 billion nationwide. This estimate did not take into account cost savings related to other avoided care activities, such as emergency room visits for rotavirus.

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