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The cost effectiveness of screening of pregnant women for syphilis to prevent congenital syphilis in the Netherlands: A review of the literature

Literatuuronderzoek naar kosteneffectiviteits-aspecten van de screening van zwangeren op syfilis ter preventie van congenitale syfilis

Synopsis

This report presents the results of a literature review on the cost effectiveness of the screening of pregnant women for syphilis to prevent congenital syphilis in the Netherlands. Different databases were used to search for national and international economic evaluations. Our searches yielded 45 publications, of which 16 were guidelines. Eventually, five publications did meet our inclusion criteria. All the other publications did not address the cost-effectiveness of screening pregnant women for syphilis to prevent congenital syphilis. The parameters that were included in the review are the type of economic evaluation, the target population, the different cost data, the discount rate, the sensitivity analysis, and the results of the studies. The results of the studies show favourable cost-effectiveness ratios for screening in both the big cities and the rural areas of the Netherlands. All the studies used the same disease model but failed to perform a proper sensitivity analysis. Therefore, in this literature review a sensitivity analysis of the disease model was made. The sensitivity analysis showed the screening of pregnant women for syphilis to be cost-effective, independent of the circumstances. The conclusion of the literature review is that screening of pregnant women for syphilis to prevent congenital syphilis is cost-effective. The screening of pregnant women should be continued in the big cities as well as in the rural areas of the Netherlands.
 

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