OHE report on appraising ultra-orphan drugs

The Office of Health Economics (OHE) have published a consulting report discussing the use of a cost-per-QALY gained decision rule to appraise treatments for very rare conditions. The report has been published as part of the NICE Highly Specialised Technologies (HST) programme and argues that it is inappropriate to focus a HST appraisal on only a cost-per-QALY measure and that the thresholds recommended seem arbitrary.


Health economics journals

A health economist, Professor Philip Clarke on behalf of the Mt Hood Diabetes Challenge Network, has compiled a list of health economics journals indicating the open access fee (in US dollars) and impact factor scores, alongside a link to the journals website with information on how to submit a paper.

Child poverty reports

The Poverty and Inequality Commission have published analysis to inform the Scottish Government’s forthcoming child poverty delivery plan.  The Commission was established to provide independent advice to the Scottish Government on reducing poverty and inequality in Scotland and to scrutinise the progress. The recent publications are a Report on the Child Poverty Strategy for Scotland 2014-17, a report on Local contributions to tackling poverty and inequality in Scotland and Advice on the Scottish Government’s child poverty delivery plan.

Quarterly figures for vital events

National Records for Scotland have published provisional figures for vital events registered in Scotland in the fourth quarter of 2017. The figures show that the number of deaths was greater in the same period of 2016 and the highest for the quarter since 2003. Over the longer term, deaths from coronary heart disease and cerebrovascular disease have decreased considerably whilst the number of deaths from cancer and respiratory disease has risen slightly. There has been a relatively large increase in the number of deaths from dementia and Alzheimer’s disease with such deaths now accounting for more than 10 per cent of all deaths compared to 5 per cent a decade ago.

Air quality responses report

The Scottish Government has published an analysis of responses to the Low Emission Zone (LEZ) consultation which took place between September and November 2017. In total 967 responses were received with a high level of consensus supporting the principle of LEZs to help improve air quality. The Scottish Government have made a commitment to introduce LEZs into Scotland’s four biggest cities between 2018 and 2020.