Efficient decisions about the allocation of health care budgets require the assessment of the effects of health care interventions and of the value for money that they provide. Decision-making processes leading to funding decisions should be structured and evidence-based.

OHE leads a substantial programme of research internationally relating both to policy and to the development of methodologies in support of robust and systematic value assessments in health care systems.

Our research on this theme addresses questions such as:

  • What is the opportunity cost of adopting new health interventions? OHE explores innovative empirical methods to estimate the cost-effectiveness threshold.
  • What constitutes value in health care? OHE investigates the principles underpinning the inclusion and measurement of elements of value of health interventions that are not captured in conventional cost-effectiveness analysis; and generates evidence of social preferences supporting (or not) their consideration in decision making.
  • How can elements of patient or social value be integrated into decision making? OHE tests and improves approaches to structured decision making, including multi-criteria decision analysis.

Key objectives for this research theme:

  • Encouraging transparency in decision making
  • Examining how best to assess the value of health care through the use of cost-effectiveness thresholds, social value judgements and structured decision-making techniques

OHE’s policy positions:

  • Assessment of new technologies should consider both their benefits and costs, including what is displaced.
  • The approach used should be consistent with the way benefits and costs are weighed up for existing technologies.
  • Decision-making about health care technologies should be consistent, transparent and accountable to all stakeholders.