EU Study Critical of NICE Criteria for Reimbursement Decisions

Posted 28 January 2013 | By

A two-year study conducted by the European Consortium in Healthcare Outcomes and Cost-Benefit research (ECHOUTCOME)  has come to the conclusion that Quality Adjusted Life Years (QALY)-a metric often used by health technology assessment (HTA) bodies, and in particular the UK's National Institute of Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE)-produces inconsistent and incorrect results.

QALYs are a statistical method used to look at the cost of a drug for a year and weigh it against how much someone's life can be extended and improved. Generally, if a drug or device treatment costs more than £20,000-30,000 per QALY, it would not be recommended as cost-effective by NICE.

The study's findings, made in a recently-released report, further called on regulators to adopt new methods of conducting HTAs.

"Agencies such as NICE should abandon QALY in favor of other approaches. European HTAs currently looking to adopt the NICE model must seriously reconsider," said Ariel Beresniak of Data Mining International, the independent research agency that conducted the EU-wide study.


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Read ABPI's Statement on the Report

Pharmalot has the text of the report here


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