Is the Use of QALYs as the Unit of Healthcare Justice Unfair to Disabled People?
London School of Economics, GB
My sincere thanks to Professor Alex Voorhoeve, who reviewed this draft, and to Dr. Jan-Willem van der Rijt for his thought-provoking response at the 3rd LSE-Bayreuth Student Philosophy Conference.
MSc Philosophy and Public Policy (2014-2015). Her research interests include personal identity, metaethics, and ethical issues in health and science policy. She hopes to work in health policy, and to one day gain the respect of a cat.
The quality-adjusted life years (QALY) is a measure of health-related quality of life commonly used in healthcare priority-setting. Years of life without a disability generates more QALYs than years of life with a disability, so any method of priority-setting that takes into account the number of QALYs generated would have a reason prioritise the interests of non-disabled people. I argue that this potential unfairness arises because several methodological features of health state valuation make it so that the QALY does not adequately reflect health-related quality of life with a disability.
How to Cite:
Li, Y., 2015. Is the Use of QALYs as the Unit of Healthcare Justice Unfair to Disabled People?. Rerum Causae, 7(1), pp.30–48.