Return on investment from expenditures incurred to eliminate mother-to-child transmission among HIV-infected women in New York State: 1998-2013

Franklin N. Laufer, Barbara L. Warren, Wendy P. Pulver, Lou C. Smith, Rodney L. Wright, Guthrie S. Birkhead

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Scopus citations


Background: Eliminating mother-to-child transmission (MTCT) of HIV has been one of New York State's public health priorities, and the goal has been virtually accomplished by meeting criteria established by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Methods: We use a return on investment (ROI) approach, from the perspective of the state, to compare expenditures incurred to prevent MTCT of HIV in NYS during the period 1998-2013 to benefits realized, as expressed as HIV treatment costs saved from averting an estimated number of HIV infections among newborns. Extrapolating from the 11.5% incidence rate of HIV-infected newborns in 1997, we projected the number of cases of MTCT of HIV that were averted over the 16-year period. A published estimate of lifetime HIV treatment costs was used to estimate HIV treatment costs saved from the averted infections; expenditures for clinical protocols and other services directly associated with preventing MTCT of HIV were also estimated. The ROI was then calculated by dividing program benefits by the expenditures incurred to achieve these benefits. Results: We estimate that 898 cases of MTCT of HIV were averted between 1998 and 2013, resulting in a savings of ≥321.03 million in HIV treatment costs. Expenditures to achieve these benefits totaled ≥81.07 million, yielding an ROI of ≥3.96. Conclusions: Aside from the human suffering from MTCT of HIV that is averted, expenditures for treatment protocols and interventions to prevent MTCT of HIV are relatively inexpensive and can result in almost 4 times their value in HIV treatment cost savings realized.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)558-562
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Mar 23 2016



  • Cost
  • Economics
  • HIV
  • Maternal and child health
  • Perinatal transmission
  • Return on investment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Infectious Diseases
  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Medicine(all)

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