Fairness is a key goal of priority setting and 'accountability for reasonableness' has emerged as the leading framework for fair priority setting. However, it has not been shown acceptable to those engaged in priority setting. In particular, since it was developed in the context of a primarily privately funded health system, its applicability in a primarily publicly funded system is uncertain. In this paper, we describe elements of fairness identified by decision-makers engaged in priority setting for new technologies in Canada (a primarily publicly funded system). According to these decision makers, accountability for reasonableness is acceptable and applicable. Our findings also provide refinements to accountability for reasonableness.
Copyright 2002 Elsevier Science Ireland Ltd.