Making Important Progress

The COVID-19 pandemic has been a critical turning point for infectious diseases (ID) in ageing adults. How to get the right preventive intervention against ID in the group that needs it the most, has been proven essential for public health needs. Today more than ever, VITAL is a necessary project that help indicate the right approach for implementing this prevention against ID in at-risk populations across Europe. Understanding and being able to measure the value of the optimal approach is most critical.

The goal of Work Package 3 (WP3) is to investigate the full economic impact of current management of ID and new preventive interventions to optimize the ID management in ageing adults that can be measured and reported in a transparent and convincing way to decision makers. In the first two years of the VITAL project, WP3 has been working on building blocks and the possible gaps and challenges of the evaluation.

In the begin of November, the team had a meeting to discuss the implementation of the building blocks into a one model framework. By making use of a stepwise approach, the evaluation framework will be adjusted from a simple static model to a more complex model. This complex model is needed to fit the evaluation to different costumers (e.g., MOH, MOF, health insurer) and to develop methods of transferability of the evaluation across different countries. Using the in-house capacities and knowledge of the companies in model development on 7 infectious diseases (flu, pneumococcal, RSV, COVID-19, pertussis, zoster, E. Coli) has given us valuable input and great examples of current standards in evaluation of ID prevention.

Some points the team is taken from the meeting regarding the evaluation framework development:

  • Links to be made between frailty-level, type of infection, health care exposure, and age, with the vaccine immune response for their economic value assessment.
  • Focus in the economic models should also be on ‘place of living’, ‘health condition’ and ‘easy implementation’ of new interventions like for vaccines.
  • Challenge to develop a ‘one-model’ approach as it must include much diversity seen in this program.
  • Complex approaches should be avoided as they may generate small added benefit and be difficult to assess because of limited data available in many environments