Systematic Review of Health Economic Analyses of Measles and Rubella Immunization Interventions

Risk Anal. 2016 Jul;36(7):1297-314. doi: 10.1111/risa.12331. Epub 2014 Dec 24.


Economic analyses for vaccine-preventable diseases provide important insights about the value of prevention. We reviewed the literature to identify all of the peer-reviewed, published economic analyses of interventions related to measles and rubella immunization options to assess the different types of analyses performed and characterize key insights. We searched PubMed, the Science Citation Index, and references from relevant articles for studies in English and found 67 analyses that reported primary data and quantitative estimates of benefit-cost or cost-effectiveness analyses for measles and/or rubella immunization interventions. We removed studies that we characterized as cost-minimization analyses from this sample because they generally provide insights that focused on more optimal strategies to achieve the same health outcome. The 67 analyses we included demonstrate the large economic benefits associated with preventing measles and rubella infections using vaccines and the benefit of combining measles and rubella antigens into a formulation that saves the costs associated with injecting the vaccines separately. Despite the importance of population immunity and dynamic viral transmission, most of the analyses used static models to estimate cases prevented and characterize benefits, although the use of dynamic models continues to increase. Many of the analyses focused on characterizing the most significant adverse outcomes (e.g., mortality for measles, congenital rubella syndrome for rubella) and/or only direct costs, and the most complete analyses present data from high-income countries.

Keywords: Benefit; cost; economic analysis; measles; rubella.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Cost-Benefit Analysis
  • Humans
  • Measles / prevention & control*
  • Measles Vaccine / therapeutic use
  • Rubella / prevention & control*
  • Rubella Vaccine / therapeutic use
  • Vaccination / economics*


  • Measles Vaccine
  • Rubella Vaccine