Economic Evaluation of a Comprehensive Teenage Pregnancy Prevention Program: Pilot Program
In this study, the authors used a community-based participatory research approach to develop estimates of the cost-benefit of the Pathways/Senderos Center, a comprehensive neighborhood-based program aimed at preventing unintended pregnancies and promoting positive development for adolescents. Using data from 1997-2003, they determined that program operating costs totaled $3,228,152.59 and the teenage childbearing rate fell from 94.10 to 40.00 per 1000 teenage girls, averting $52,297.84 in total societal costs, with an economic benefit to society from program participation of $2,673,153.11. Therefore, total costs to society exceeded economic benefits by $559,677.05, or $1599.08 per adolescent per year. In an extrapolation analysis, benefits to society exceed costs by $10,474.77 per adolescent per year by age 30 years on average, with social benefits outweighing total social costs by age 20.1 years. These findings suggest the need to expand beyond pilot demonstrations and evaluate the long-range cost effectiveness of similarly comprehensive programs when they are implemented more widely in high-risk neighborhoods. Modified Author Abstract.