Quarantine cost effective despite initial cost

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  • PharmacoEconomics & Outcomes News 484 - 13 Aug 2005

    Quarantine cost effective despiteinitial cost

    "Despite somewhat daunting initial costs, quarantinesaves both lives and money" during outbreaks ofinfectious disease such as severe acute respiratorysyndrome (SARS), according to results from a studycarried out in Canada.

    A model was constructed and used to compare thepotential costs of an unchecked outbreak with those ofquarantine. Quarantine was associated with bothprevention of infection and life-preservation, comparedwith an epidemic. In addition, quarantine was also aneffective cost-saving mechanism, regardless of when itwas implemented, as indicated by total savings of$Can279 million,* $Can274 million and$Can232 million if implemented during the primary,secondary and tertiary waves of infection, respectively.The researchers state that, quarantine is "not only in ourhumanitarian interest . . . it is also in our collectiveeconomic interest".* 2003 Canadian dollars

    Gupta AG, et al. The economic impact of quarantine: SARS in Toronto as a casestudy. Journal of Infection 50: 386-393, No. 5, Jun 2005 800975704

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    PharmacoEconomics & Outcomes News 13 Aug 2005 No. 4841173-5503/10/0484-0001/$14.95 Adis 2010 Springer International Publishing AG. All rights reserved

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