It is problematic to compare these conversations when few comparisons, at least the ones reaching the media, include meaningful model-based economic evaluations or appraisals of methodology implemented to support the comparisons.
A recent study highlighted the importance of including adverse event data in economic analyses. Including Adverse Drug Events in Economic Evaluations of Anti-Tumour Necrosis Factor-_α Drugs for Adult Rheumatoid Arthritis: A Systematic Review of Economic Decision Analytic Models.
The parallels with evaluation of cancer therapies can be made. Looking at rheumatoid evaluations, 43 model-based economic evaluations of biologics for adult RA were identified from 2,483 topic relevant studies. Nine studies included incidence and costs of adverse drug events or ADEs and were included in the review by Heather and colleagues. Unfortunately precise methods used to incorporate ADEs were not uniformally disclosed and a lack of consistent terminology limited direct comparisons.
Physician and patients need information to guide care decisions especially when adverse event profiles differ between regimens--directly impacting quality of life.
Several value assessment tools emerged in response to the escalating drug prices. The focus is not just about the cost, but it’s about the value and quality of cancer care we can afford to deliver to our patients. Defining value in healthcare is complicated and elusive; it depends on the perspectives of the stakeholders. The definition on value of prescription drugs also varied from different organizations (e.g., Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER), ASCO.--Are we ready to assess the value of cancer drugs?