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June 21, 2006

Cost-effectiveness and Resource Allocation

Author Affiliations

Letters Section Editor: Robert M. Golub, MD, Senior Editor.

JAMA. 2006;295(23):2723-2724. doi:10.1001/jama.295.23.2723-a

To the Editor: In their Commentary on drug prices and value for money, Dr Henry and colleagues1 contrast ways in which the British National Institute for Clinical Excellence and the Australian Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme use cost-effectiveness analysis (CEA) to assess the value of medical technologies, including newly approved drugs. They assert that if a drug is cost-effective it should be affordable to the third-party payer, so long as the “cost-effectiveness threshold has been set appropriately.” I believe that this is incorrect for 2 reasons.

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