The political economy of the assessment of value of new health technologies

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5 Citations (Scopus)


Health technology assessment provides a common framework for evaluating the costs and benefits of new health technologies to inform decisions on the public funding of new pharmaceuticals and other health technologies. In Australia and England, empirical analyses of the opportunity costs of government spending on new health technologies suggest more quality adjusted life years are being forgone than are being gained by a non-trivial proportion of funded health technologies. This essay considers the relevance of available empirical estimates of opportunity costs and explores the relationship between the public funding of health technologies and broader political and economic factors. We conclude that the benefits of a general reduction in the prices paid by governments for new technologies outweigh the costs, but evidence of informed public acceptance of reduced access to new health technologies may be required to shift the current approach to assessing the value of new health technologies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)116-122
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Health Services Research and Policy
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • health technology assessment
  • economic evaluation
  • opportunity costs
  • politics
  • reimbursement
  • Health technology assessment
  • Opportunity costs
  • Economic evaluation
  • Politics
  • Reimbursement


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