Objective: Evaluating the relative cost-effectiveness of using vitamin A in children aged less than 5-years-old regarding the reduction of events involving diarrhoea, malaria and mortality from the Colombian health-related social security system (CHSSS).
Materials and methods: A decision tree was constructed, using deaths averted as outcome. Probabilities were taken from the pertinent literature and costs from official sources. The cost-effectiveness threshold was three times greater than the per capita Colombian gross domestic product (GDP) in 2012. Probabilistic and deterministic sensitivity analyses were made and cost effectiveness acceptability curves were drawn.
Results: Providing a cohort of 100,000 children with vitamin A (as opposed to not doing so) would represent a saving regarding medical attention costs of $ 340,306,917 due to the number of events involving diarrhea (4,268) and malaria (76), having become reduced, as well as cases requiring hospitalization. A saving for the CHSSS was consistently obtained in sensitivity analysis.
Conclusion: Providing vitamin supplements for children aged less than 5 years-old would seem to be the least costly and most effective (dominant) strategy for the CHSSS, i.e. compared to not doing so).