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Workshop - Economic Evaluations: what are the ethical implications for public health? - TOPHC 2014
Michal Rozworski, independent researcher, and the Centre's Olivier Bellefleur offered a 90-minute workshop at the Ontario Public Health Convention, held from March 31 to April 2, 2014.
Published in May 2014. DescriptionDownload 1.15 MB

Economic evaluations are often used to assess the relative efficiency of competing programs or policy options. The answers they provide can play a major role in decision making, especially when resources are limited and hard choices have to be made. This workshop will help participants identify, understand and contextualize the main ethical implications that can be hiding behind evidence from economic evaluations, which may seem at first to be free of value judgments and ideologies.......

This workshop, organized by the NCCHPP, took place in Toronto on April 1, 2014, during the Ontario Public Health Conference (TOPHC).

In this session, participants were able to:

• Become familiar with the main methods used in economic evaluations (cost-benefit analysis, cost-effectiveness analysis and cost-utility analysis) of health policies and of healthy public policies;

• Learn about the ethical implications of the two main assumptions underlying most economic evaluations (methodological individualism and preference-satisfaction utilitarianism);

• Learn to assess how efficiency and effectiveness, and the ways they are measured, can conflict with other social values or policy objectives, such as justice, equity, and our responsibility to future generations.

Economic Evaluations: what are the ethical implications for public health?
31 slides
 1.15 MB
 Image - first page of the presentation - click to download

Workshop format

The workshop used interactive presentations including numerous examples relevant to public health actors in order to introduce participants to essential concepts in economics and ethics. It also included small group sessions in which participants critically assessed the ethical implications drawn from real examples of economic evaluations. Groups then worked through a scenario in which they had to think about how to respond to and present this evidence in order to inform decision makers.

Related publication

You might also be interested in the following NCCHPP publication “An Introduction to the Ethical Implications of Economic Evaluations for Healthy Public Policy”.

To learn more, click here.

The production of the NCCHPP website has been made possible through a financial contribution from the Public Health Agency of Canada.