AØKK08210U  Health Economic Evaluations

Volume 2017/2018

The course will give students an introduction to the principles of economic evaluations in health care. Topics include:

  • Foundations for economic evaluation
  • Critical assessment of clinical trials
  • Cost measurement
  • Budget impact and cost-of-illness
  • Cost-benefit, cost-effectiveness and cost-utility
  • Outcome and preference measurement
  • Trial-based economic evaluations and decision-analytic modeling
  • How to present results and how to handle uncertainty
  • Value of information analysis
  • Systematic reviews and meta-analyses
  • Introduction to modeling methods in MS Excel
  • Prioritization in the Danish health care sector


Learning Outcome

After completing the course, the student should be able to…:


  • Explain the difference between welfarist and extra-welfarist approaches to health economic evaluations
  • Explain differences between cost-benefit, cost-effectiveness and cost-utility analyses
  • Understand and identify biases in clinical trial design and reporting
  • Explain the methods and value of meta-analyses
  • Describe the differences between alternative decision-analytic models including decision trees and Markov models and the difference between trial-based evaluations and decision-analytic models
  • Explain the concepts of deterministic and probabilistic sensitivity analysis and their ability to assess robustness of results
  • Explain concepts related to preference measurement (including time trade-off and standard gamble) as well as common instruments (including EQ-5D)
  • Explain the concepts of budget impact analysis and value of information analysis and their usefulness in healthcare decision-making



  • Critically assess health economic evaluations as published in the scientific literature
  • Assess the documented efficacy of a healthcare intervention



  • Using the published literature, determine if a particular healthcare intervention can be said to be cost effective or not
  • Analyze cost-effectiveness analyses to determine the drivers of conclusions and assess their validity 
  • Identify proper methods for analyzing cost-effectiveness of a new healthcare intervention and structure the analysis


The course is built around the book:

Drummond, M. F., Methods for the economic evaluation of health care programmes, 4th edition, Oxford University Press, 2015, ISBN 9780199665877 ( link),

And include chapters from the book: Briggs, A., Decision Modelling for Health Economic Evaluation, Oxford University Press, 2006, ISBN 9780198526629 ( link).

Supplemented by a number of scientific articles.

Understanding of economic concepts including opportunity costs and statistical methods.
3 hours lectures per week (except holidays).

Timetable and venue:
The schedule for the semester spring 2018 will be available no later than 7th of November 2017
7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Written assignment, 3 weeks
The exam is a project paper that evaluates published cost-effectiveness research and identifies cost-effective treatments for a disease of the student’s choice. The student should demonstrate the ability to critically appraise cost-effectiveness research.

The paper can be answered in Groups of 2-3 students and only in English.
All aids allowed
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
External censorship
if chosen by the Head of Studies.
Exam period

The schedule for the exam 2018 will be available no later than 7th of November 2017


For enrolled students more information about examination, rules, exam schedule etc. is available at the intranet for master students (UK) and master students (DK).




The schedule for the reexam 2018 will be available no later than 7th of November 2017


If only a few students have registered for the re-exam, the exam might change to an oral exam including the date, time and place for the exam, which will be informed by the Examination Office.


For enrolled students more information about reexamination, rules, schedule etc. is available at the intranet for master students (UK) and master students (DK).


Criteria for exam assesment

The student must in a satisfactory way demonstrate that he/she has mastered the learning outcome of the course.

  • Category
  • Hours
  • Lectures
  • 42
  • Preparation
  • 82
  • Exam
  • 82
  • Total
  • 206