University of Wyoming

School of Pharmacy




Welcome to the 2022/23 Principles of Health Economics and Outcomes (PHCY 5141): A New Start in Health Technology Assessment online course that is open, as a 3-credit postgraduate course, to extra-mural students. This course is designed to provide a theoretical and practical foundation for the appropriate methods and application of techniques in health technology assessment (HTA) that meet the standards of normal science and fundamental measurement. Meeting the evidence needs of formulary committees, practitioners, patients, and other health system decision-makers are critical for effective health care delivery and the meaningful assessment of pharmaceutical products and devices.

Unfortunately, current analytical standards in pharmacoeconomics or health technology assessment fail to meet the required evidentiary standards. The misplaced focus on approximate information and assumption-driven simulated modeled claims for cost-effectiveness fails both the standards for normal science and fundamental evidence. It is an analytical dead-end.

This course presents a necessary new start in the assessment of value claims for competing pharmaceutical products and devices. The course is in three parts: (i) required evidentiary standards for product and therapy assessment; (ii) the failure of approximate modeled information for therapy decisions; and (iii) value claims and protocols for a new start in product evaluation that meet required scientific standards with feedback for ongoing disease area and therapeutic class reviews.

The course introduces two key premises in health technology assessment:

  • All value claims must refer to single attributes that meet the demarcation standards for normal science: claims must be credible, evaluable, and replicable
  • All value claims must be consistent with the limitations imposed by the axioms of fundamental measurement: they must meet ratio or interval properties

The course is designed to meet the needs of health system decision-makers; a framework of analysis that is not only consistent with the standards of normal science and fundamental measurement, but one that focuses on capturing needs-fulfillment quality of life of patients and caregivers. The importance of rejecting non-evaluable assumption-driven modeled value claims for conducting and assessing outcomes research will be emphasized. This provides a firm empirical basis for evaluating long-term clinical outcomes.


Dr. Paul C. Langley, Adjunct Faculty Instructor, School of Pharmacy, University of Wyoming, Laramie WY and Adjunct Professor, College of Pharmacy. University of Minnesota, Minneapolis MN


The course extends over a period of 7 weeks. It comprises an Introduction and 14 modules, with slides/audio, notes, and references for each module. There are weekly discussion sessions with the instructor, book reviews, and mid-course and final online examinations The Introduction may be watched; the modules are password protected.

The Introduction notes and slides/audio can be viewed below:

The program modules on the following page are password protected.

To access program modules please click here.