Using Economic Evaluation in Policy Decision-Making in Asian Countries: Mission Impossible or Mission Probable?

Authors

  • Jomkwan Yothasamut BA, MA,

    Corresponding author
    1. Health Intervention and Technology Assessment Program (HITAP), Ministry of Public Health, Nonthaburi, Thailand;
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  • Sripen Tantivess BPharm, MPH, PhD,

    1. Health Intervention and Technology Assessment Program (HITAP) and International Health Policy Program (IHPP), Ministry of Public Health, Nonthaburi, Thailand;
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  • Yot Teerawattananon MD, PhD

    1. Health Intervention and Technology Assessment Program (HITAP), Ministry of Public Health, Nonthaburi, Thailand
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Jomkwan Yothasamut, Health Intervention and Technology Assessment Program (HITAP), 6th floor, 6th Building, Department of Health, Ministry of Public Health, Tiwanon Road, Nonthaburi 11000, Thailand. E-mail: jomkwan@ihpp.thaigov.net

ABSTRACT

Objectives and Methods:  This article provides an extensive review of literature and an in-depth analysis aimed at introducing potential applications of economic evaluation and at addressing the barriers that could prohibit the use or diminish the usefulness of economic evaluation in Asian settings. It also proposes the probable solutions to overcome these barriers.

Results:  Potential uses of economic evaluation include the development of public reimbursement lists, price negotiation, the development of clinical practice guidelines, and communicating with prescribers. Two types of barriers to using economic evaluation, namely barriers relating to the production of economic evaluation data and decision context-related barriers, are identified. For the first sort of barrier, the development of the national guidelines, the development of economic evaluation database, planning and use of economic evaluation in a systematic manner, and prioritization of topics for assessment are recommended. Furthermore, educating potential users and the public, making the economic evaluation process transparent and participatory, and incorporating other health preferences into the decision-making framework have been promoted to conquer decision context-related barriers.

Conclusions:  It seems practically impossible to adopt other countries' approaches using economic evaluation for priority setting because of several constraints specifically related to the context of each setting. Nevertheless, given a better understanding of its resistance, and proper policies and strategies to overcome the barriers applied, it is more than probable that a method with system/mechanisms specifically designed to fit particular settings will be used.

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