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Public preferences for responsibility versus public preferences for reducing inequalities

By Richard Edlin, Aki Tsuchiya and Paul Dolan

Abstract

In cost-utility analysis, the numbers of quality-adjusted life years (QALYs) gained are aggregated by placing the same weight on each QALY. Deviations from this rubric have been proposed on a number of grounds, including the degree to which persons might be deemed responsible for the illness faced, and inequality in lifetime health between groups. Most research has looked at these factors in isolation. This paper analyses public preferences about the relative importance of these factors. Over 500 members of the general public in the UK are interviewed in their homes. Where "blameworthy" groups experience a moderate drop in quality of life due to their behaviour, they appear to receive higher priority than an otherwise "trustworthy" group f they also experience poorer health prospects because the latter is weighted more heavily than the former

Topics: H Social Sciences (General), HB Economic Theory, RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell
Year: 2012
DOI identifier: 10.1002/hec.1799
OAI identifier: oai:eprints.lse.ac.uk:40059
Provided by: LSE Research Online
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