Cost Effectiveness of Universal Hepatitis B Vaccinations
Published in the March 2013 issue of Pediatrics, is an argument for the cost effectiveness of universal Hepatitis B vaccination. What is missing from this analysis is the cost of caring for the additional cases of autism caused by the vaccination of newborns, 2 month olds, and 6 month old infants who were not at risk for hepatitis B but ended up autistic, likely specifically because of the Hepatitis B vaccine.
JAMA published, in the Feb 13th 2013 issue, an article titled, “Association Between Maternal Use of Folic Acid Supplements and Risk of Autism Spectrum Disorders in Children”. This study of over 85,000 pregnancies in Norway found that those mom’s who took folate during pregnancy, in the years 2002 through 2006, had an autism rate of 1 in 1000. In the USA, where most mom’s have folate in their prenatal vitamins, the autism rate for that same time period was 1 in 100. Of the 4 million births in the USA, the 1 in 100 rate would result in 40,000 new cases of autism. Reducing the rate to 1 in 1000, as it is in Norway, by not giving universal Hepatitis B vaccines (only give it to those babies at risk), there would only be 4,000 cases of autism in the USA. The cost of caring for that additional 36,000 cases of autism will be in the billions!
Below is the abtract from this article
OBJECTIVE: To compare the cost-effectiveness of hepatitis B virus (HBV) control strategies combining universal vaccination with hepatitis B immunoglobulin (HBIG) treatment for neonates of carrier mothers.
METHODS: Drawing on Taiwan’s experience, we developed a decision-analytic model to estimate the clinical and economic outcomes for 4 strategies: (1) strategy V—universal vaccination; (2) strategy S—V plus screening for hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) and HBIG treatment for HBsAg-positive mothers’ neonates; (3) strategy E—V plus screening for hepatitis B e-antigen (HBeAg), HBIG for HBeAg-positive mothers’ neonates; (4) strategy S&E—V plus screening for HBsAg then HBeAg, HBIG for all HBeAg-positive, and some HBeAg-negative/HBsAg-positive mothers’ neonates.
RESULTS: Strategy S averted the most infections, followed by S&E, E, and V. In most cases, the more effective strategies were also more costly. The willingness-to-pay (WTP) above which strategy S was cost-effective rose as carrier rate declined and was <$4000 per infection averted for carrier rates >5%. The WTP below which strategy V was optimal also increased as carrier rate declined, from $1400 at 30% carrier rate to $3100 at 5% carrier rate. Strategies involving E were optimal for an intermediate range of WTP that narrowed as carrier rate declined.
CONCLUSIONS: HBIG treatment for neonates of HBsAg carrier mothers is likely to be a cost-effective addition to universal vaccination, particularly in settings with adequate health care infrastructure. Targeting HBIG to neonates of higher risk HBeAg-positive mothers may be preferred where WTP is moderate. However, in very resource-limited settings, universal vaccination alone is optimal.
My conclusion: Even if it were cost effective (code for saves the government money and theoretically saves the tax payers money), just a little common sense leads one to realize that creating 36,000 new autistic kids and likely hundreds of thousands of less severely but damaged kids, is insanity and can only be promoted by those; with a financial interest in the promotion, with conflicts of interest, or with their heads so deep in the sand of status quo thinking, that they cannot see the forest for the trees.
Do not give your newborn, 2 month old, or 6 month old the Hepatitis B vaccine if the birth mom does not have Hepatitis B.