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QALY - Measure of Cost-Benefit Analysis of Health Interventions

Author(s): Aleksandar Višnjić | Vladica Veličković | Nataša Šelmić Milosavljević

Journal: Acta Facultatis Medicae Naissensis
ISSN 0351-6083

Volume: 28;
Issue: 4;
Start page: 195;
Date: 2011;
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Keywords: QALY | cost-benefit analysis | decision-making | health economics

For the purpose of economic evaluation in the health economics, several analytical techniques that are designed for comparing two or more health interventions in terms of costs and effects are used. Cost-benefit analysis provides the opportunity of comparing values of alternative health interventions that have very different health benefits, which significantly facilitates comparisons. The purpose is to assess the relationship between the cost and utility of health interventions in terms of the patient’s number of years in full health. The most commonly used measure in these analyses is QALY (Quality-adjusted life-year). QALY is a measure of the impact of health interventions and treatment that combines two dimensions of health outcomes: the degree of health improvement and the time period for which the improvement of health is exhibited, including the length of life. Determining the QALY is one of the most effective ways of decision-making about distribution of resources in the health care system. The method is designed to distribute resources in such a way as to be spent where they will bring the maximum possible benefit for the patient. If we have to make decisions how to direct funds from limited budgets, then each and the lowest cost has to correlate to the maximum possible benefit and these methods are the best tool under such conditions.

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