Groundbreaking EQ-5D Project Launched in the United Arab Emirates


Workshop launches new EQ-5D project in the UAE

Workshop launches new EQ-5D project in the UAE

OHE’s Professor Nancy Devlin and Koonal Shah have been working on-site in Abu Dhabi to establish a new programme to measure and value health in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The project is being undertaken in collaboration with Dr Iain Blair, Iffat Elbarazi and Dr Selini Katsaiti from the United Arab Emirates University, and Dr Manny Papadimitropoulos from Eli Lilly & Company and the University of Toronto. Data collection is being undertaken by Ipsos Observer.

The effort is the first of its kind in the Middle East. While there is interest in using patient-reported outcome measures such as the EQ-5D in UAE health care systems, no research has been done to date on local preferences regarding health and quality of life and no local value sets for EQ-5D states have been developed.

The initial aim of the project is to establish the acceptability and feasibility in this culture of using methods such as time trade off (TTO) exercises and discrete choice experiments (DCE) to value health states. The TTO approach has been widely used in Europe, North and South America and Asia, but it is not clear whether or to what the extent such methods are culturally appropriate for Emirati nationals, an Arabic-speaking Muslim population. The project is intended to assess the acceptability of TTO to this population and to explore the influence of culture and religious beliefs, and the appropriateness of the expressions, used on how participants respond to TTO questions.

Specifically, the research will address:

  • How respondents differ in their preferences for quality of life and in attitudes towards death compared with populations in other countries
  • How easy or difficult respondents find the valuation tasks
  • How the methods might be adjusted to make them more suitable for use in the UAE.

Data collection for the initial phase is about to commence, following a three-day workshop, run jointly by OHE, academics from UAE University and Ipsos Observer, that trained the interview team. Face-to-face interviews will be conducted to collect both quantitative data on EQ-5D values and extensive qualitative data on respondents’ feedback on the questions.

Reports from the project will be published in 2014.

The project’s full title is “An Investigation of Health State Values in the United Arab Emirates”. It is funded by Eli Lilly & Company (Global Patient Outcomes & Real World Evidence) and the EuroQol Group. Ethics consent for the research has been granted by the Al Ain Medical District Human Research Ethics Committee.

For additional information, please contact Prof Nancy Devlin.  

Posted in EQ-5D and PROMs | Tagged Spotlight on OHE