The Value of Health



Recently the Council for Public Health and Health Care, the main advisory body of the Dutch government on health policy, recommended that only treatments costing less than €80,000 to let a patient live an extra year in good health should be reimbursed. This recommendation is sensible and leads to better and more transparent health policy decisions. Criticism that the recommendation is merely a cost-cutting device or that we cannot assign a value to human life are unfounded. The oration discusses this advice in more detail, in particular the assumption that health economists can reliably value health. It argues that this is not so, but that there are ways to obtain reliable values for health.

Han Bleichrodt (1965) is professor of health economics at the Department of Economics and at Erasmus MC. He has received several prestigious research grants, most recently a VICI grant from the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research (NWO). He is one of the most publishing and most quoted economists in the Netherlands. Last year he was visiting professor at the University of California, Irvine.

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Contact information:
Anka Bachanek