A New Valuation Method: Directly Eliciting Personal Utility Functions
A new OHE Research Paper describes a novel approach for valuing health-related quality of life: directly eliciting personal utility functions Methods commonly used for eliciting the preference data upon which value sets are based (e.g. time trade-off, standard gamble, discrete…
A new OHE Research Paper describes a novel approach for valuing health-related quality of life: directly eliciting personal utility functions
Methods commonly used for eliciting the preference data upon which value sets are based (e.g. time trade-off, standard gamble, discrete choice experiment) have in common an aim to ‘uncover’ the preferences of survey respondents by asking them to evaluate a sub-set of health states. The responses are then used to infer their preferences over all possible dimensions and levels of a descriptive system. An alternative approach is to ask respondents directly about the relative importance to them of the dimensions, levels and interactions between them.
A new OHE Research Paper describes a new stated preference approach for directly eliciting personal utility functions (PUFs) from members of the general public. The approach focuses on helping respondents to reflect and deliberate on their preferences. A computer-based tool was developed and used to administer the questions via face-to-face interviews. The Research Paper reports the methods and findings of piloting work to test the feasibility and acceptability of the PUF approach for valuing a simplified version of the EQ-5D-5L, a measure of patient-reported outcomes.
The PUF approach appears to be feasible. The authors conclude that it has the potential to: (a) yield meaningful, well-informed preference data from respondents; and (b) provide individual preference data that can be aggregated toyield a social value set for the EQ-5D. The paper concludes by describing the research and testing needed to further refine some elements of the approach.
The PUF approach described in the paper can be used either as a standalone valuation method or as a complement to existing stated preference techniques. For example, the approach to identifying the position of ‘dead’ = 0 within a descriptive system is currently being used in a methodological study exploring various ways of anchoring discrete choice experiment data obtained for the EQ-5D-Y.
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