Income Elasticity of Vaccines Spending versus General Healthcare Spending

Y. Natalia Alfonso, Guiru Ding, David Bishai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Using cross-country data on gross domestic product and national expenditure on vaccines, we estimate and compare the income elasticity of vaccine expenditure and general curative healthcare expenditure. This study provides the first evidence on the national income elasticity of vaccination spending. Both fixed and random effects models are applied to data from 84 countries from 2010 to 2011. The income elasticities for healthcare expenditure and vaccine expenditure are 0.844 and 0.336, respectively. Despite vaccines' high cost-effectiveness, the national propensity to spend income on vaccines as income increases lags behind general health care. The low income elasticity of vaccine spending means that relying on economic growth alone will provide an unacceptably slow trajectory to achieving high vaccine coverage levels.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)860-872
Number of pages13
JournalHealth Economics (United Kingdom)
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1 2016


  • LMIC
  • expenditure
  • health care
  • national income elasticity
  • vaccines

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy


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