- Open Access
Does cancer deserve special treatment when health technologies are prioritized?
© Hansen; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. 2013
- Received: 21 October 2013
- Accepted: 12 November 2013
- Published: 18 November 2013
Despite most new cancer treatments having relatively high costs and low health benefits, they are often funded ahead of treatments for other illnesses. And yet, according to the article by Dan Greenberg and colleagues, most Israeli oncologists and family physicians think that new cancer treatments should not receive such a high priority and that cost-effectiveness data should be used to support funding decisions. In this commentary, I point out that the increasing pressure worldwide when prioritizing health technologies to widen the scope of the benefits that are recognized beyond just narrowly-defined health benefits would almost certainly include the special characteristics of cancer. Future research would be worthwhile into how the criteria for prioritizing technologies should be incorporated into prioritization frameworks in practice, including, in particular, how to resolve the inherent trade-offs.
This is a commentary on http://www.ijhpr.org/content/2/2/44/
- Family Physician
- Heart Failure Care
- Effective Cancer Treatment
PH is an economist at the University of Otago in New Zealand and co-inventor of 1000Minds prioritization software. In 2008 he spent a sabbatical in Israel at The Gertner Institute for Epidemiology & Health Policy Research. In 2009–10 he served on a review panel, appointed by the Minister of Health, into New Zealanders’ access to high cost medicines.
Thank you to the editors of the journal, Avi Israeli and Bruce Rosen, for their helpful suggestions.
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