Background and aims: Road traffic injury (RTI) as a major public health problem is the ninth leading cause of death globally. Cases of RTIs are increasing in most of the regions of the world. Research into RTIs indicates that there are distinct differences in the pattern of economic growth between high-income countries (HIC) and low-middle-income countries (LMIC). We aimed to address the economic burden of RTI among LMIC versus HIC; for this purpose we gathered the evidences through a review of the literature.
Methods: We systematically searched databases (PubMed, Web of Science, Science Direct, Scopus, ProQuest, SID, IranMedex and Magiran) up to February 2016 and included the original articles on economic burden of RTI in national levels. Two authors appraised the identified studies. We examined the direct, indirect and intangible costs of RTI as a percentage of GDP, and also as a percentage of household consumption expenditure in LMIC versus HIC.
Results: 20 studies from fifteen countries met the inclusion criteria, of which five are HIC and ten are LMIC. The mean cost of direct plus indirect costs of RTI as a percentage of GDP and as a percentage of households consumption expenditure in LMIC and HIC are respectively 1.29, 1.61 and 1.74, 3.50; and mean of total economic burden of RTI (direct+indirect+intangible cost) as a percentage of GDP and as a percentage of households consumption expenditure in LMIC versus HIC are respectively 2.35, 1.43 and 2.01, 2.90. Among LMIC, the economic burden of RTI in Iran is the highest (6.64% GDP) and among HIC, it's Australia (2.28% GDP).
Conclusion: The economic burden of RTI in LMIC is nearly a half of the health expenditure in these countries. Also the economic burden of RTI in HIC is a quarter of total health expenditure. This evidence emphasizes the importance of road safety interventions as cost-benefit interventions.
- economic burden
- road traffic injuries
- systematic review
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