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Challenges in Evaluating the Cost-Effectiveness of Substance Abuse Treatment: The Example of Buprenorphine/Naloxone

April 23, 2012

Bruce R. Schackman, PhD
Associate Professor of Public Health, Weill Medical College of Cornell University

About the Presentation: Cost-effectiveness analysis has been widely adopted as a method to compare the value of medical interventions, expressed in cost per quality-adjusted life year, but is used less frequently in evaluating substance abuse treatment and prevention. Dr. Schackman will discuss the rationale for cost-effectiveness analysis and challenges in applying it to substance use using the example of buprenorphine/naloxone for opioid dependence, including a recently published model-based analysis, opioid dependence quality of life research, and a planned clinical trial.

About the Presenter: Dr. Schackman is Associate Professor of Public Health and Chief of the Division of Health Policy in the Department of Public Health at Weill Medical College of Cornell University. After earning a B.A. and an M.B.A. from Harvard University, he worked as a management consultant with McKinsey & Company, as a management expert in the Office of the Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, and as a managing director for health care venture capital investments in a financial services firm. He then returned to Harvard, where he earned his Ph.D. in health policy with a concentration in decision sciences.

Dr. Schackman’s expertise is in economic evaluation of health interventions conducted alongside clinical trials and cohort studies, cost-effectiveness and comparative effectiveness simulation modeling, and implementation science research—particularly relating to treatment of infectious diseases and substance abuse. His current research projects include economic evaluations of HIV and hepatitis C screening and treatment and opioid dependence treatment in the United States and HIV treatment in Haiti. He is a member of the NIH-supported AIDS Clinical Trials Group and National Drug Abuse Clinical Trials Network. In 2005, he was recognized with the Research in Action Award by the Treatment Action Group, a non-profit organization dedicated to advocating for larger and more efficient research efforts towards finding a cure for AIDS.