Probabilistic sensitivity analysis in health economics

Stat Methods Med Res. 2015 Dec;24(6):615-34. doi: 10.1177/0962280211419832. Epub 2011 Sep 18.


Health economic evaluations have recently become an important part of the clinical and medical research process and have built upon more advanced statistical decision-theoretic foundations. In some contexts, it is officially required that uncertainty about both parameters and observable variables be properly taken into account, increasingly often by means of Bayesian methods. Among these, probabilistic sensitivity analysis has assumed a predominant role. The objective of this article is to review the problem of health economic assessment from the standpoint of Bayesian statistical decision theory with particular attention to the philosophy underlying the procedures for sensitivity analysis.

Keywords: Bayesian decision theory; health economic evaluation; sensitivity analysis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Bayes Theorem
  • Decision Making
  • Delivery of Health Care / economics*
  • Humans
  • Models, Statistical*
  • Probability
  • Uncertainty