See featured analyses conducted by our center community and colleagues.
Cancer Prevention Guidelines
Jane Kim and her team led a decision analysis to inform the revision of US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) cervical cancer screening guidelines, using new data on standalone human papillomavirus (HPV) testing for women ages 25 and older. Learn about the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force.
High Value Options for Stroke
Ankur Pandya is using cost-effectiveness analysis to identify high-value policies for preventing and treating stroke. The health and economic consequences of stroke in the U.S. are profound, and expected to escalate further with population aging. Policy makers, providers, and patients will face inevitable tradeoffs.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
How do cost-effectiveness analysis and benefit-cost analysis differ?
Cost-effectiveness analysis and benefit-cost analysis are both forms of economic evaluation that inform public health decisions within and outside of the health care system. Both involve comparing the incremental costs and benefits of alternative interventions. However, in cost-effectiveness analysis, benefits are estimated using natural units, such as life years gained or cases of illness averted, or units that integrate effects on health and longevity, such as quality-adjusted life-years (QALYs) or disability-adjusted life-years (DALYs). In benefit-cost analysis, both health and non-health benefits are estimated in monetary terms.
What is the difference between cost-effectiveness and affordability?
Cost-effectiveness in a measure of value—how much benefit as achieved for each unit of cost. Affordability is how much you can buy with whatever funds are available. So cost-effectiveness is independent of any budget, whereas affordability is dependent on a budget.
For example, a train pass could be cost-effective if the alternative is driving your own gas-guzzling car, but it might not be affordable if it costs $200 to purchase whereas your car has a full tank of gas at the moment.
Is a budget impact analysis a cost-effectiveness analysis?
No, a budget impact analysis answers the question of affordability—given a budget constraint, are the resources available to purchase it. Cost-effectiveness analysis answers the question of how much benefit is derived for each unit of cost. Something can be cost effective but not affordable, and the reverse. Budget impact analyses are often used in conjunction with cost effectiveness analysis to determine whether something is good value for money and whether the money exists to acquire it.