Given the increased awareness of the importance of cost-effectiveness in health care, there has been a growth in the number of published economic evaluations in recent years. Partly in response to concerns about deficiencies in the methodology of published studies, there has been a growth of interest in guidelines for economic evaluation. This paper reviews the various objectives of economic analyses, and then summarizes the existing groups of guidelines for cost and cost-effectiveness analyses. Finally, it compares and discusses the appropriate uses and limitations of the guidelines, with particular emphasis on those developed for applications in developing countries.
Health Policy and Planning (2001) 16 (1) 113-121 [doi:10.1093/heapol/16.1.113]