Pneumonia is an acute respiratory disease caused by either bacterial or viral infection. It is most prevalent among children and the elderly, due to their lower immune system functions. Although pneumonia is normally treated after the discovery of the symptoms, both viral and bacterial pneumonia can be prevented proactively by vaccination. Hospitalized pneumonia costs the Canadian health care system hundreds of millions of dollars per year. As the Canadian population continues to grow and age, there are concerns about the increase in disease burden over time if preventative measures that promote and strengthen population immunity, such as vaccination, are not achieved.
This briefing estimates the future economic burden of pneumonia in Canada by examining trends in disease incidence, estimating and quantifying the current burden, and forecasting expected burden to the year 2025 for those aged 65 years and older.