Direct and indirect costs of rabies exposure: A retrospective study in Southern California (1998-2002)

Stephanie A. Shwiff, Ray T. Sterner, Michele T Jay-Russell, Shefali Parikh, Amy Bellomy, Martin I. Meltzer, Charles E. Rupprecht, Dennis Slate

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


The direct and indirect costs of suspected human rabies exposure were estimated for San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties, California, USA. Clinic, hospital, and county public health records (1998-2002) were examined to determine direct costs for postexposure prophylaxis (PEP), and 55 (41%) former patients were contacted to voluntarily provide estimates of their indirect costs associated with receiving PEP. Additional costs due to public health and animal control personnel responses to rabid animals were collected, including diagnostic testing and wages. The mean total cost of a suspected human rabies exposure was $3,688, the direct costs per case were $2,564, and the indirect costs were $1,124 of that total. About one third of the total cost for suspected human rabies exposure was attributed to indirect costs (e.g., lost wages, transportation, and day-care fees), most of which were not reimbursable to the patient.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)251-257
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Wildlife Diseases
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • California
  • Direct costs
  • Economics
  • Indirect costs
  • Postexposure prophylaxis
  • Rabies

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Ecology


Dive into the research topics of 'Direct and indirect costs of rabies exposure: A retrospective study in Southern California (1998-2002)'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this