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Biomédica

Print version ISSN 0120-4157

Abstract

ATEHORTUA, Sara; CEBALLOS, Mateo; GAVIRIA, Carlos Felipe  and  MEJIA, Aurelio. Quality assessment of economic evaluations in health care in Colombia: a systematic review. Biomédica [online]. 2013, vol.33, n.4, pp.615-630. ISSN 0120-4157.  http://dx.doi.org/10.7705/biomedica.v33i4.1464.

Introduction: Economic evaluation is a tool that can provide useful information to decision-makers in health. The methodological quality of Colombian studies has not been assessed in a systematic way. Objective: To assess the methodological quality of economic evaluations in health care in Colombia. Materials and methods: Systematic review of economic studies that assessed both costs and effectiveness of at least two technologies related to a decision problem in Colombia. Search was performed in international and Colombian databases and was completed with manual searches and contact with authors. Data was synthesized in tables that included relevant information about the studies. Methodological quality was evaluated using a predefined instrument. Searches were performed between January and February. Results: 48 studies were included in the review. Perspective of the study, incremental analyzes and description of alternatives were usually well specified. However, more than half of the articles did not state clearly the time horizon or discount rate and most studies did not address equity and implementation issues. Management of uncertainty was also problematic. Conclusions: Economic evaluation in health care in Colombia has grown considerably in recent years. However, methods vary considerably between studies and therefore their usefulness for decisionmaking in health is limited. It is necessary to standardize methods in order to generate evidence of higher quality to support decisions within the Colombian health care system.

Keywords : Economics, medical; costs and cost analysis; health economics; review literature as topic; evaluation studies as topic; Colombia.

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