Assessing the Economic Value of Anticancer Therapiesby Niels Neymark, N. Neymark
With ever increasing demands on the constrained resources available for health care services, no one involved in decision making in health care can continue to ignore the economic costs of the services provided or the relative value for money offered by the available treatments. Economic evaluation has therefore become an important and indispensable tool for medical deci sion making, alongside the well-known methods for clinical eval uation. This is also true for cancer, despite the aura of sanctity often of surrounding this dreaded disease and the apparent willingness the general population to spend large sums in this area and do "everything possible" for the patients. In recent years, articles dealing with assessing the costs and benefits of various cancer treatments have begun to appear in scientific medical and eco nomic journals. This book provides a comprehensive survey and assessment of the current state of the art of economic evaluations and cost ana lyses in cancer. It gives an introduction to the methods available for economic evaluations, before surveying and assessing the available publications. Separate chapters are devoted to the most prevalent cancers, and in each chapter the current clinical prac tice and research problems are summarized in order to provide a background for the economic analyses. At the end, a summary assessment of the literature is provided along with some sugges tions for a future research agenda.
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