Surrogate Outcomes and the Prentice Criteria

Clinical trials aim to measure how different treatments affect outcomes of interest to patients.  In many cases, however, measuring the ultimate outcomes of interest proves logistically difficult.  For instance, measuring overall survival for some oncology patients may be impractical if survival for the standard of care is long since the required time and expense to…

Will price transparency reduce prices?

Economic theory would say that in normal markets, the answer is yes. When prices are widely known, suppliers can compete on prices–as well as quality–and markets become more efficient. In the health care setting, however, a key question is ‘which price’? For hospital services, patients are the ultimate consumers of the service and do pay…

What is MCDA and why do we need it?

Value measurement using cost-effectiveness analysis (CEA) is one of the core stables of health economic research.  CEA often uses quality adjusted life years (QALYs) to capture how a treatment affects a patients mortality and morbidity.  CEA makes explicit assumptions about the tradeoffs between mortality and morbidity by assuming these are additive.  Further, this approach, however,…

Peer effects: Does your perceptions about your peers matter more than your peers’ behavior?

It appears that not only does your friend’s behavior affect your behavior, but your perception of their behavior–independent from their actual behavior–affects your behavior. Want a concrete example of this? A paper by Amialchuk et al. (2019) finds the following: Using a nationally representative dataset, we estimate the effect of misperception about friends’ alcohol, smoking,…