Journal article

Is there a case for using visual analogue scale valuations in cost-utility analysis?

David Parkin, Nancy Devlin

Health Econ | Published : 2006


This paper critically reviews theoretical and empirical propositions regarding visual analogue scale (VAS) valuations of health states and their use in cost-utility analysis (CUA). A widely repeated assertion in the economic evaluation literature is the inferiority, on theoretical grounds, of VAS valuations. Five common criticisms are: VAS lacks a theoretical foundation; VAS values are not 'choice based'; VAS values are not consistent with utility-under-uncertainty requirements; context and range effects observed in VAS valuation data mean that they cannot even be considered to represent measurable value functions; and when completing a VAS, people are not trying to express values. We addres..

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