A Zika virus outbreak across six southern states could could cost billions of dollars in lost productivity, Medicaid costs, and direct medical costs, according to a new study.
For the study, published in PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases, researchers designed a computer model to predict the potential economic impact of a Zika virus outbreak across Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas — the states most vulnerable to the virus. The model accounted for different attack ranges, circumstances, and scenarios.
The study found that an outbreak affecting 0.1 to 10 percent of the populations of those six states would cost from $183 million to $10.3 billion. Researchers say the study can help inform decisions on how much money to invest in Zika virus prevention, control, and response.
America’s Essential Hospitals has established a resource page dedicated to this public health threat. Visit this page regularly for new and updated information.