Using QALY indicator in oncology on the example of chosen countries
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A very important tool to evaluate value of medical procedures is measuring the quality of life. One of the quality life measurement tools is QALY, particularly important in cancerous diseases, palliative care and cases of long term after-effects of disease. All around the world, public budgets associated with medications are gradually increasing, hence the regulations that increase the supervision over these expenses. Reimbursement principles concerning medicinal technologies are regulated statutorily. Any drug medical technology reimbursed from public funds is subject to a pharmacoeconomic assessment. The most restrictive requirements of ICER (cost/QALY) rating and formal ‘rigid’ cost-effectiveness thresholds apply in Great Britain and Poland. Regardless of the universality and utility, the QALY unit has limitations that may be particularly important during economical assessment of proceedings methods in oncology. It should be also stressed out that there is currently no alternative to QALY – the only common and universal measure of therapeutic effects in different clinical situations. The purpose of the current review is presentation of using QALY in oncology in different countries. The economic aspect of QALY, problems with using it, as well as advantages and disadvantages of using it in end of life period have been considered.
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