Volume 28, Issue 6
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



During the period July–December 1977, a widespread epidemic of dengue fever occurred in Puerto Rico. The cost of the epidemic was calculated, using upper and lower limit incidence figures, in terms of direct costs (medical care and epidemic control measures) and indirect costs (lost production of ill workers and parents of ill children). Direct costs were estimated to range between $2.4 and $4.7 million. Indirect costs were calculated by using current (1977) employment and wage data and population extrapolations from the 1970 census, and entailed a loss to the Puerto Rico economy of from $3.7 to $10.9 million. The total cost of this epidemic, therefore, was estimated to be in a range of $6.0 to $15.6 million, of which epidemic control measures comprised 7.8–20.2%.


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