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DATE & TIME: Wednesday, 24th February 2021, 2:00 pm (UK GMT)

TO REGISTER:  This is a free event, which will be taking place online via Zoom. Please complete this form to register.


In the United Kingdom, policy-makers want to improve population health. They also want to reduce inequalities in health between social groups. In contrast, health economic evaluations in the UK are typically “distributionally naïve”: they, usually, focus solely on the average net consequences of interventions, without modelling or valuing their impacts on inequality. Distributional cost effectiveness analysis (DCEA) is a new form of CEA that can capture policy makers stated objectives to improve population health and reduce inequality. We fielded two Person-Trade-Off choice-experiments designed to inform the conduct of DCEAs in the UK. In these studies, we explore how the UK-public think government should act when faced with trade-offs between efficiency and inequality; and test whether “inequality-aversion” differs depending upon the groups between which a health inequality exists and type of health an intervention provides. In total, 1,582 members of the UK-public took part: 80 in a face-to-face study field in Sheffield/Hull, and 1,502 in a study fielded online. We find evidence that the UK-public are more averse to inequalities in health between socioeconomic groups than neutrally labelled groups, and that this difference is, at least in part, driven by the influence non-health factors play in shaping participant responses to questions about socioeconomic groups. In addition, we find evidence that suggests the UK-public are more willing to prioritise disadvantaged socioeconomic groups over advantaged socioeconomic groups for interventions that improve life-expectancy, rather than improve quality of life. In this seminar, Simon will detail these studies and outline their potential implications for DCEA.


Simon McNamara, ScHARR, University of Sheffield, & BresMedSimon McNamara recently passed his PhD viva at ScHARR, where he is supervised by Professor Aki Tsuchiya and Professor John Holmes. His research is primarily focused on inequalities in health, and, in particular, the way in which inequalities are captured within economic evaluation in health. In addition to his Sheffield affiliation, Simon works as a Director at BresMed: a health economics and outcomes research consultancy. Prior to joining ScHARR, he completed an MSc in Behavioural Science from the London School of Economics and Political Science, an MSc in Health Economics from the University of York, and a BSc in Economics from the University of York

Forthcoming External Talks

The Health Economic and Policy Seminar Series

Wednesday, 03 April 2024 to Saturday, 31 May 2025