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Journal: PharmacoEconomics


The English community pharmacy New Medicine Service (NMS) significantly increases patient adherence to medicines, compared with normal practice. We examined the cost effectiveness of NMS compared with normal practice by combining adherence improvement and intervention costs with the effect of increased adherence on patient outcomes and healthcare costs.

Concepts: Pharmacology, Medicine, Costs, Ayurveda, Economics, Pharmaceutical drug, Pharmacy, Health science


There has been a widely documented and recognized increase in diabetes prevalence, not only in high-income countries (HICs) but also in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs), over recent decades. The economic burden associated with diabetes, especially in LMICs, is less clear.

Concepts: Diabetes mellitus type 2, Diabetes mellitus, Economic cost


The provision of stress ulcer prophylaxis (SUP) for the prevention of clinically significant bleeding is widely recognized as a crucial component of care in critically ill patients. Nevertheless, SUP is often provided to non-critically ill patients despite a risk for clinically significant bleeding of roughly 0.1 %. The overuse of SUP therefore introduces added risks for adverse drug events and cost, with minimal expected benefit in clinical outcome. Historically, histamine-2-receptor antagonists (H2RAs) have been the preferred agent for SUP; however, recent data have revealed proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) as the most common modality (76 %). There are no high quality randomized controlled trials demonstrating superiority with PPIs compared with H2RAs for the prevention of clinically significant bleeding associated with stress ulcers. In contrast, PPIs have recently been linked to several adverse effects including Clostridium difficile diarrhea and pneumonia. These complications have substantial economic consequences and have a marked impact on the overall cost effectiveness of PPI therapy. Nevertheless, PPI use remains widespread in patients who are at both high and low risk for clinically significant bleeding. This article will describe the utilization of PPIs for SUP and present the clinical and economic consequences linked to their use/overuse.

Concepts: Pharmacology, Epidemiology, Clinical trial, Randomized controlled trial, Effectiveness, Adverse drug reaction, Clostridium difficile, Stress ulcer


Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is a very common chronic liver disease worldwide, is on the rise following the trend of increasing prevalence of obesity, is the second most common indication for liver transplantation, and is an important cause for hepatocellular carcinoma. Despite the increasing recognition of NAFLD as an important chronic liver disease, little has been published on the economic and health-related quality of life (HR-QOL) impact of NAFLD. We reviewed the current literature related to the economics and HR-QOL of NAFLD and found that increased costs and decreased HR-QOL were associated with NAFLD.

Concepts: Cancer, Obesity, Cirrhosis, Metabolic syndrome, Hepatology, Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, Fatty liver, Steatosis


Enthusiasm for performance-based risk-sharing arrangements (PBRSAs) continues but at variable pace across countries. Our objective was to identify and characterize publicly available cases and related trends for these arrangements. We performed a review of PBRSAs from 1993 to 2016 using the University of Washington PBRSA Database. Arrangements were categorized according to a previously published taxonomy. Macro-level trends were identified related to the timing of adoption, countries involved, types of arrangements, and disease areas. Our search yielded 437 arrangements. Among these, 183 (41.9%) were categorized as currently active, while 58.1% have expired. Five main types of arrangements have been identified, namely coverage with evidence development (149 cases, 34.1%), performance-linked reimbursement (104 cases, 23.8%), conditional treatment continuation (78 cases, 17.8%), financial or utilization (71 cases, 16.2%), and hybrid schemes with multiple components (35 cases, 8.0%). The pace of adoption varies across countries but has renewed an upward trend after a lull in 2012/2013. Conditions in the USA may be changing toward a more favorable environment of PBRSAs. Interest in PBRSAs remains high, suggesting they are a viable coverage and reimbursement mechanism for a wide range of medical products.

Concepts: Taxonomy, According to Jim, Trend


The prevalence of obesity has more than doubled in the USA in the past 30 years. Obesity is a significant risk factor for diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and other clinically significant co-morbidities. This paper estimates the medical care cost savings that can be achieved from a given amount of weight loss by people with different starting values of body mass index (BMI), for those with and without diabetes. This information is an important input into analyses of the cost effectiveness of obesity treatments and prevention programs.

Concepts: Health care, Medicine, Cancer, Disease, Nutrition, Obesity, Mass, Body mass index


Our objective was to develop a value set based on Irish utility values for the EuroQol 5-Dimension, 5-Level instrument (EQ-5D-5L).


Accurate measurement of the marginal healthcare costs associated with different diseases and health conditions is important, especially for increasingly prevalent conditions such as obesity. However, existing observational study designs cannot identify the causal impact of disease on healthcare costs. This paper explores the possibilities for causal inference offered by Mendelian randomization, a form of instrumental variable analysis that uses genetic variation as a proxy for modifiable risk exposures, to estimate the effect of health conditions on cost. Well-conducted genome-wide association studies provide robust evidence of the associations of genetic variants with health conditions or disease risk factors. The subsequent causal effects of these health conditions on cost can be estimated using genetic variants as instruments for the health conditions. This is because the approximately random allocation of genotypes at conception means that many genetic variants are orthogonal to observable and unobservable confounders. Datasets with linked genotypic and resource use information obtained from electronic medical records or from routinely collected administrative data are now becoming available and will facilitate this form of analysis. We describe some of the methodological issues that arise in this type of analysis, which we illustrate by considering how Mendelian randomization could be used to estimate the causal impact of obesity, a complex trait, on healthcare costs. We describe some of the data sources that could be used for this type of analysis. We conclude by considering the challenges and opportunities offered by Mendelian randomization for economic evaluation.

Concepts: Gene, Genetics, Epidemiology, Disease, Evolution, Randomness, Approximation, Estimation


Health policy instruments such as the public financing of health technologies (e.g., new drugs, vaccines) entail consequences in multiple domains. Fundamentally, public health policies aim at increasing the uptake of effective and efficient interventions and at subsequently leading to better health benefits (e.g., premature mortality and morbidity averted). In addition, public health policies can provide non-health benefits in addition to the sole well-being of populations and beyond the health sector. For instance, public policies such as social and health insurance programs can prevent illness-related impoverishment and procure financial risk protection. Furthermore, public policies can improve the distribution of health in the population and promote the equalization of health among individuals. Extended cost-effectiveness analysis was developed to address health policy assessment, specifically to evaluate the health and financial consequences of public policies in four domains: (1) the health gains; (2) the financial risk protection benefits; (3) the total costs to the policy makers; and (4) the distributional benefits. Here, we present a tutorial that describes both the intent of extended cost-effectiveness analysis and its keys to allow easy implementation for health policy assessment.

Concepts: Health care, Health economics, Public health, Health insurance, Costs, Policy, Cost-utility analysis, Finance


There is a debate in the health economics literature concerning the most appropriate way of applying Amartya Sen’s capability approach in economic evaluation studies. Some suggest that quality-adjusted life years (QALYs) alone are adequate while others argue that this approach is too narrow and that direct measures of capability wellbeing provide a more extensive application of Sen’s paradigm.

Concepts: Health economics, Economics, Quality-adjusted life year, Welfare economics, Amartya Sen, Capability approach, Martha Nussbaum, Development economics