Cost of illness of non-multidrug-resistant tuberculosis in Germany: an update

Background: A total of 5429 new cases of tuberculosis (TB) were reported in Germany in 2018; out of the 3780 TB cases for whom drug susceptibility testing was available, the proportion of multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB) cases was only 3.1% (118 cases).

On the basis of the current therapy guidelines of the German Central Committee against Tuberculosis, this study estimates the mean direct outpatient and combined in- and outpatient costs per non-MDR-TB patient from the perspective of the German statutory health insurance (SHI) system, together with costs arising from productivity losses and costs due to public health screening for TB in close contacts.

From the insurance perspective, the mean outpatient costs (rounded) per case were € 1.628,- for adults and € 1.179,- for children for standard therapy; the mean cost of inpatient treatment amounted to € 8.626,-. The mean combined inpatient/outpatient cost was € 8.756,- for adults and € 8.512,- for children. As 95% of all TB patients were adults, the weighted treatment cost per patient in Germany in 2018 was € 8.746,-. These are in addition to the mean cost arising from productivity losses (€ 1.839,-) and, weighted by pulmonary infectivity, cost of contact investigations (€ 368,-), coming to a total of € 10.953,-.

Given the clear increase in the number of non-MDR-TB cases since 2015, TB is still a disease of significant economic impact in Germany.


Diel R, Nienhaus A. Cost of illness of non-multidrug-resistant tuberculosis in Germany: an update. ERJ Open Res 2020; 6: 00329-2020 [].