CHEERS 22 MEETS CATCH 22

Joseph Heller’s Catch 22, published in 1961, has been described as both a dark comedy and absurdist fiction, and as one of the iconic novels of the 20th century. The term Catch 22, is defined by the Collins English Dictionary as follows: “If you describe a situation as a catch-22, you mean it is an impossible situation because you cannot do one thing until you do another thing, but you cannot do the second thing until you do the first thing.” As

Read more

TUFTS’ ORDINAL OVERSIGHT

It is unusual, after 46 years of database development to point out that there is a basic flaw that unfortunately renders the entire exercise irrelevant. This is the situation that the Tufts University Cost-Effectiveness Analysis (CEA) database finds itself in once questions of the axioms of fundamental measurement are raised. The concern rests on two considerations: first, the properties, from a measurement perspective, of the direct and indirect multiattribute preference instrument that have been widely accepted and applied in modeling over the

Read more

THE PATIENT VOICE: ADVOCACY AND SUPPORT

Maimon Research LLC has a long standing advisory and consulting relationship with a leading patient advocacy and support group: Patients Rising and Patients Rising Now. Under the direction of Ms Terry Wilcox, Patients Rising is focused on advocacy and support for access to quality affordable healthcare while Patients Rising Now is focused on advocacy and support for the rights of patients with chronic and life threatening diseases. For more information on current activities, the links are www.patientsrising.org and www.patientsrisingnow.org

Read more

THE ICER FANTASY

In the US, the Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER) occupies a special, if not a unique position in promoting economic evaluations of pharmaceutical products that are entirely imaginary. This is not an unusual event. Through ICER’s embrace of the approximate information meme that has dominated health technology assessment for the last 30 years, it is merely trying to emulate agencies in single payer health systems such as the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) in the UK who

Read more

THE MYSTICAL VIRAL QALY

Richard Dawkins in his best seller A Devils Chaplain describes a meme as a mind virus. In common with a computer virus a meme can transmit or propagate from one individual to another with high fidelity if two conditions are met: a readiness to replicate information accurately (ISPOR practice guidelines; textbooks as primers for building imaginary models) and a readiness to obey instructions encoded in the information (education programs, graduate studies, sitting at the feet of the leaders in technology assessment). A

Read more