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Keywords:

  • medical devices;
  • reimbursement decisions;
  • commercial pricing;
  • Bayesian prior

SUMMARY

Product vendors and manufacturers are increasingly aware that purchasers of health care will fund new clinical treatments only if they are perceived to deliver value-for-money. This influences companies' internal commercial decisions, including the price they set for their products. Other things being equal, there is a price threshold, which is the maximum price at which the device will be funded and which, if its value were known, would play a central role in price determination. This paper examines the problem of pricing a medical device from the vendor's point of view in the presence of uncertainty about what the price threshold will be. A formal solution is obtained by maximising the expected value of the net revenue function, assuming a Bayesian prior distribution for the price threshold. A least admissible price is identified. The model can also be used as a tool for analysing proposed pricing policies when no formal prior specification of uncertainty is available. Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.