To determine and compare the cost of Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) disease in Australia, Finland, Israel, Switzerland and the United Kingdom a collaborative study was undertaken. The incidence of Hib disease varies in these 5 countries from 34 to 58.5 cases per 100,000 children less than 5 years of age. Although the incidence of meningitis in this age group is similar (between 18 and 26/100,000) in these countries, the incidence of epiglottitis varies from 0 to 22.7/100,000. The cost of hospitalization and the frequency of sequelae are similar for 4 of the 5 countries; however, the break even cost of a vaccination program to prevent 90% of Hib disease is estimated to vary from $22 to $84 per child (US$). Because of a lower incidence of Hib disease and lower cost for hospitalization, these costs are considerably less than those for the United States ($301.64 using similar calculations).