Background: The importance of understanding the perspective of patients towards their own care is increasingly recognized, both in clinical practice and in pharmaceutical drug development. Stated preference methods to assess the preference of patients towards different aspects of diabetes treatment have now been applied for over a decade.
Objective: Our goal was to examine how stated preference methods are applied in diabetes care, and to evaluate the value of this information in developing the patient perspective in clinical and policy decisions.
Methods: A systematic review was conducted in accordance with the PRISMA (Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses) statement. The information sources were MEDLINE, EMBASE, Biosis, Current Contents, Web of Science, CINAHL, PsycINFO, and EconLit.
Results: Three contingent valuation studies and 11 discrete choice experiments were retrieved. The majority of studies were conducted from 2009 onwards, but some date back to 1998. The reasons provided for applying the stated preference methods were to help differentiate between products, or to enable inclusion of the patient's perspective in treatment decisions. The main aspects of treatment examined were related to glucose control, adverse events, and drug administration. The majority of patients preferred glucose control over avoiding minor hypoglycemic events. Patient willingness to pay was above $US100/month for glucose control, avoiding immediate health hazards such as nausea, and oral or inhaled drug administration. Preference towards drug administration was highly associated with previous experience with injectable diabetes medicine.
Conclusions: The ability of a drug to lower glucose levels plays a decisive role in the choice between alternative treatments. Future research should strive to develop questionnaire designs relevant for the decision context of the study. That is, if the aim is to foster shared decision making, in clinical practice or drug development, this should guide the study design. Furthermore, concise reporting of all study dimensions-from the qualitative prework to the analysis stage-is warranted.