Costing tools


Spectrum, PMTCT module

Futures Institute

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Designed to answer a number of "what if" questions, this tool evaluates costs and benefits of intervention programs to reduce transmission of HIV from mother to child. Three different sets of interventions are included in the module: drug treatment (seven options), type of delivery, and type of infant feeding (formula, breastfeeding or mixed). Each treatment option requires data on costs of interventions, as well as user fee costs if these apply. The vertical transmission rate is set as a program default, varying according to treatment, mode of delivery and infant feeding option. Outputs include benefit-cost ratios (total costs savings divided by total costs of the intervention) as well as cost-effectiveness measures such as cost per HIV infection averted, and cost of death averted.

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John Stover



Summary of main features


Purpose To estimate the benefits and costs of different approaches to implementing PMTCT programs
Health MDGs addressed 6 (HIV/AIDS)
Scope of interventions PMTCT
Type of software Custom software, module in Spectrum
User manual available Yes
Potential users planners and economists in HIV
Skills required Knowledge of PMTCT programs
Type and length of training required One day
Costing strategy and methods costs by component (drugs, testing, counseling, service delivery)
Level of aggregation: National or provincial/state
Program/system costs included Yes
Time-frame Short-term
Modeling of intervention impact or interactions on epidemiology or demography Yes
Output Infections averted and cost per infection averted
Automatic generation of reports Tables yes, reports no.
Country applications Panama, Honduras, Dominican Republic
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