Condition-specific QALYs

Generic preference-based measures for generating quality adjusted life years (QALYs) such as EQ-5D, SF-6D, HUI2 and HUI3 have been found to perform poorly in some conditions and are often not used. In recent years there has been increasing interest in the development and usage of condition-specific QALYs produced using condition-specific preference-based measures (CSPBM). These measures can be used to generate QALYs for use in economic evaluation.

CSPBM can be derived from existing instruments or can involve the development of an entirely new measure. HEDS has led the development of methodology of deriving CSPBM from existing measures and has applied these methods to a number of conditions including overactive bladder, urinary incontinence, asthma, flushing, common mental health problems and cancer. These CSPBM enable QALYs to be generated directly from the existing measure, so QALYs can be estimated for all studies containing data on the existing measure.

However some fundamental concerns remain as to whether CSPBM can be used to make comparisons between interventions for different conditions.

The COSMeQ project reviewed, developed and tested methods for deriving CSPBM from existing measures.

Further Information

If you would like further information about this work, please contact Donna Rowen