Research Article

Cost-benefit analysis of long-term haemodialysis for chronic renal failure.

Br Med J 1975; 2 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.2.5967.376 (Published 17 May 1975) Cite this as: Br Med J 1975;2:376
  1. M J Buxton,
  2. R R West

    Abstract

    A cost-benefit analysis of long-term maintenance haemodialysis indicates that there is a large gulf between the cost of the service and "economic" benefit. The difference may be considered to represent one estimate of the price society is prepared to pay to maintain life. Using "best estimates" from available data we found the implicit social value of maintaining a patient on haemodialysis to be approximately pounds 4720 per annum in hospital or pounds 2600 at home. The analysis would suggest that society must look carefully at alternative uses for health expenditure before extending indiscriminately to large sections of the population these treatment programmes or other similarly expensive.