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A comparison of United States and United Kingdom EQ-5D health states valuations using a nonparametric Bayesian method

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Publication details

JournalStatistics in Medicine
DatePublished - 10 Jul 2010
Issue number15
Number of pages13
Pages (from-to)1622-1634
Original languageEnglish


Cost-effectiveness analysis of alternative medical treatments relies on having a measure of effectiveness, and many regard the quality adjusted life year (QALY) to be the current 'gold standard.' In order to compute QALYs, we require a suitable system for describing a person's health state, and a utility measure to value the quality of life associated with each possible state. There are a number of different health state descriptive systems, and we focus here on one known as the EQ-5D. Data for estimating utilities for different health states have a number of features that mean care is necessary in statistical modelling.

There is interest in the extent to which valuations of health may differ between different countries and cultures, but few studies have compared preference values of health states obtained from different countries. This article applies a nonparametric model to estimate and compare EQ-5D health state valuation data obtained from two countries using Bayesian methods. The data set is the US and UK EQ-5D valuation studies where a sample of 42 states defined by the EQ-5D was valued by representative samples of the general population from each country using the time trade-off technique. We estimate a utility function across both countries which explicitly accounts for the differences between them, and is estimated using the data from both countries. The article discusses the implications of these results for future applications of the EQ-5D and for further work in this field.

    Research areas

  • preference-based health measure, nonparametric methods, time trade-off, EQ-5D, PREFERENCE DATA, MULTIATTRIBUTE, UTILITIES, SYSTEM, INDEX, MODEL, statistics

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