Herpes Zoster (HZ) is a significant public health burden in Italy, particularly among persons over the age of 50. The purpose of this study was to compare the novel Adjuvanted Recombinant Zoster Vaccine (RZV) with the already existing Zoster Vaccine Live to determine the clinical and economic impact of HZ immunization in the 65-year-old (YOA) cohort in Italy (ZVL). A static Markov model was built to track all 65 YOA individuals from the year of vaccination to the year of death, comparing three alternative HZ vaccination strategies: no vaccination, ZVL vaccination, and RZV vaccination. In the base-case scenario, three 65-year-old cohorts were assumed to get vaccinated within three years, with vaccination coverage rates of 20%, 35%, and 50% at years one, two, and three, respectively, as recommended by the National Immunization Plan. The three 65 YOA Italian cohorts accounted for a total of 2,290,340 people. It was anticipated that 564,178 of these patients could be immunized against RZV or ZVL in three years. Over ZVL, RZV immunization might prevent an extra 35,834 HZ and 8,131 postherpetic neuralgia (PHN) occurrences, resulting in a total savings of €12.4 million for the national healthcare and social systems.

The introduction of RZV is likely to have a greater impact on the burden of HZ illness in the 65-year-old cohort in Italy. The avoidance of HZ and PHN cases may result in a decrease in the cost load on the healthcare and social systems.

Reference: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/21645515.2019.1657753