Measurement of health utilities in children

Lillian Sung, Stavros Petrou and Wendy J. Ungar

in Economic Evaluation in Child Health

Published in print October 2009 | ISBN: 9780199547494
Published online February 2010 | e-ISBN: 9780191720055 | DOI:
 Measurement of health utilities in children

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The measurement of health-related quality of life (HRQoL) has been increasingly emphasized in pediatrics. The same issues relevant to the measurement of HRQoL in adults apply to children, although assessment in children poses additional challenges. These include the need to consider the developmental ability for self-assessment in younger children and the possibility of enhanced risk aversion when parents are proxy respondents for their children, particularly when a standard gamble is used to determine health state utility for calculation of quality-adjusted life years (QALYs). This chapter discusses direct and indirect preference elicitation techniques and presents some of the more common methods to elicit health state utilities in children. Next, the issue of different raters of utilities is discussed and age-related issues are considered. Finally, future directions for research in the understanding of pediatric health utilities are suggested.

Keywords: quality of life; utilities; standard gamble; proxy assessment; QALY; preference elicitation

Chapter.  6591 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Public Health and Epidemiology

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