Oped: Life Sciences

This op-ed appeared in ICERWatch on June 26, 2019. The Institute for Clinical and Economic Review and its controversial “one-size-fits-all” value framework are a direct threat to rare disease patients, an independent report warns. In its newly-released report, “Looming Challenges for ICER in Assessing the Value of Rare Disease Therapies,” the independent Pioneer Institute identifies a troubling...
This article appeared on The Mackinac Center for Public Policy on June 12, 2019. In Canada, Australia, the United Kingdom and elsewhere, government-run health care systems use “quality-adjusted life years” to help determine what medical procedures and drugs are available for patients. In theory, this prevents people from getting unnecessary treatment and helps prioritize patient...
This op-ed by Shira Schoenberg appeared in MassLive on April 25, 2019. The debate over former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin’s inaccurately named “death panels” has come to Massachusetts. The debate centers on a measure of cost-effectiveness for health care, which assigns a value to a life that changes based on whether a person is...
This article by Chris Rochester appeared in The MacIver Institute on April 23, 2019. “What’s a year of life worth?” That compelling question was posed by Dr. William S. Smith, a visiting fellow at the Boston-based Pioneer Institute in a recent op-ed questioning the merits of a metric that is increasingly used to make life-and-death decisions...
This op-ed by William Smith and Adam Crepeau appeared in the Portland Press Herald on April 23, 2019. Imagine if the Maine Legislature decided that large pickup trucks were becoming too expensive for the working class people who drive them.  Then imagine that legislators established a commission designed to study the costs to manufacture and...
This op-ed by William Smith appeared in the Washington Examiner on April 18, 2019. On April 8, at a Harvard Medical School forum hosted by Pioneer Institute, President Trump’s secretary of health and human services was asked whether it was advisable for state Medicaid programs to use “cost-effectiveness reviews” that have become common in Europe....
This op-ed by William Smith appeared in STAT News on February 22, 2019. What’s a year of life worth? That question is at the heart of a metric called the quality-adjusted life year that is increasingly being used to make decisions about paying for new drugs. If I was asked that question about one of...
This op-ed by William Smith appeared in Commonwealth Magazine on February 3, 2019. THE BAKER ADMINISTRATION recently released its budget proposal for one of their most high-profile issues: drug prices in the Medicaid program. To the surprise of many in the biopharmaceutical industry, there are some promising initiatives in the proposal from an administration that is thought to...