The role of the expected value of individualized care in cost-effectiveness analyses and decision making

Value Health. 2012 Jan;15(1):13-21. doi: 10.1016/j.jval.2011.07.015.


Objective: To explore the feasibility and potential role of the expected value of individualized care (EVIC) framework.

Methods: The EVIC quantifies how much benefits are forgone when a treatment decision is based on the best-expected outcomes in the population rather than in the individual patient. We have reviewed which types of patient-level attributes contribute to the EVIC and how they affect the interpretation of the outcomes. In addition, we have applied the EVIC framework to the outcomes of a microsimulation-based cost-effectiveness analysis for glaucoma treatment.

Results: For EVIC outcomes to inform decisions about clinical practice, we need to calculate the parameter-specific EVIC of known or knowable patient-level attributes and compare it with the real costs of implementing individualized care. In the case study, the total EVIC was €580 per patient, but patient-level attributes known at treatment decision had minimal impact. A subgroup policy based on individual disease progression could be worthwhile if a predictive test for glaucoma progression could be developed and implemented for less than €130 per patient.

Conclusions: The EVIC framework is feasible in cost-effectiveness analyses and can be informative for decision making. The EVIC outcomes are particularly informative when they are (close to) zero. When the EVIC has a high value, implications depend on the type of patient-level attribute. EVIC can be a useful tool to identify opportunities to improve efficiency in health care by individualization of care and to quantify the maximal investment opportunities for implementing subgroup policy.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cost-Benefit Analysis
  • Data Interpretation, Statistical
  • Decision Making*
  • Disease Progression
  • Glaucoma / economics*
  • Glaucoma / physiopathology
  • Glaucoma / therapy*
  • Humans
  • Models, Economic*
  • Patient Preference
  • Research Design*