Cost-benefit analysis of targeted hearing directed early testing for congenital cytomegalovirus infection

Int J Pediatr Otorhinolaryngol. 2015 Dec;79(12):2090-3. doi: 10.1016/j.ijporl.2015.09.019. Epub 2015 Sep 25.


Objectives: In this study, we estimate an ex ante cost-benefit analysis of a Utah law directed at improving early cytomegalovirus (CMV) detection.

Study design: We use a differential cost of treatment analysis for publicly insured CMV-infected infants detected by a statewide hearing-directed CMV screening program.

Methods: Utah government administrative data and multi-hospital accounting data are used to estimate and compare costs and benefits for the Utah infant population.

Results: If antiviral treatment succeeds in mitigating hearing loss for one infant per year, the public savings will offset the public costs incurred by screening and treatment. If antiviral treatment is not successful, the program represents a net cost, but may still have non-monetary benefits such as accelerated achievement of diagnostic milestones.

Conclusions: The CMV education and treatment program costs are modest and show potential for significant cost savings.

Keywords: Cost–benefit analysis; Cytomegalovirus; Sensorineural hearing loss.

MeSH terms

  • Antiviral Agents / economics*
  • Antiviral Agents / therapeutic use
  • Child Health Services / economics*
  • Child Health Services / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Cost-Benefit Analysis
  • Cytomegalovirus Infections / congenital
  • Cytomegalovirus Infections / diagnosis*
  • Cytomegalovirus Infections / drug therapy
  • Hearing Loss / diagnosis
  • Hearing Loss / economics*
  • Hearing Loss / virology
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Neonatal Screening / economics
  • Utah


  • Antiviral Agents