New cancer drugs are very expensive - here’s how we work out value for our money

New cancer drugs are very expensive - here’s how we work out value for our money

This very timely and well written article explains how Australia determines whether new drugs are worth the extremely high prices wanted by pharmaceutical companies. The process is similar to that used in Canada and the UK and no doubt other countries with universal health care, where “quality-adjusted life years” (QALYs) are calculated to determine value for money:

Having our quality of life and indeed our life expectancy reduced to some cold hearted financial equations is pretty confronting, but University of Adelaide academics Jonathan Karnon, Professor of Health Economics, Hossein Haji Ali Afzali, Senior Research Fellow and Laura C Edney, Research Fellow do a good job of explaining why this process is used to work out how to best use limited public health funds...


Photo: Pink Grevillea flowers in the rain

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3 Replies

  • More on QALYs... this was 2 years ago... foreshadowing? :-(

    Don't think the U.S. insurance companies aren't familiar with these compulations...

  • Exactly Chris. ANY entity that is serious about trying to work out the best use of available funding, is going to try and find some means of fairly assessing which to chose of the many different options available...

  • Very sobering.

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