Dr Jeroen Jansen on Challenges With Current Approaches to Value Assessment

Jeroen Jansen, PhD, lead scientific advisor, Open-Source Value Project, Innovation and Value Initiative, discusses challenges with today’s approaches to value assessment.

With many different initiatives to assess value in the United Sates, do you see any challenges with today’s approaches to value assessment, and what efforts are needed to improve them?
Value assessment essentially boils down to comparing the benefits, risks, and costs of alternative treatment options for a certain patient population. In principle, we all more or less agree about that, about comparing risks, benefits, and costs, and by bringing risks, benefits, and costs together, that’s how we quantify the value of one treatment in comparison to another. But there’s a lot of debate about what’s the appropriate framework, the different ways of how to bring this together. Even at the more fundamental level, what kind of evidence do we use to quantify value? How do we combine the different sources of evidence to quantify value? And that’s currently not done in a really transparent manner. I think there definitely could be an improvement made there, to make it more transparent.

On top of that, I think what’s even more important is it arguably needs to be more patient centered, and that doesn’t mean simply collaborating with patient groups. I think we need to do a much better job. So when we start to think about value, either when we define frameworks or when we do actual analyses about the value of a certain medical technology, since these analyses are complex, we need to understand what are the important components, and as such, we need to involve patients from the front end of doing these kinds of analyses.

I think improvements can be made in terms of credibility, the science of value assessment in itself, but also to get a better understanding of what is relevant for patients and acknowledge that patients are diverse. Patients have different preferences, and we need to do a better job understanding those preferences and the variation in those preferences and find the methods to properly incorporate those to do a better job in quantifying the value of a treatment.
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