Lawrenceville, NJ, USA—June 4, 2018—ISPOR, the professional society for health economics and outcomes research, recently concluded its ISPOR 2018 conference in Baltimore, MD, USA. The conference drew 3741 healthcare stakeholders representing 70 countries from all sectors of healthcare, including policy makers, global thought leaders, researchers and academicians, public and private payers, decision makers, and patient representatives. The conference centered on the timely theme, “Real-World Evidence, Digital Health, and the New Landscape for Health Decision Making,” and included a wide variety of compelling topics in health economics and outcomes research (HEOR). 

The conference opened with the first plenary, “Inflection Point for Real-World Evidence? The Transformational Role of Digital Health.” The panel, comprised of leaders who have been working on cutting-edge initiatives in this arena, shared their learnings that included the current barriers to the use of real-world evidence and what they believe the future holds for the transformational role of digital health around the world. Panelists included Adrian F. Hernandez, MD, MHS; Michelle McMurry-Heath, MD, PhD; Danica Marinac-Dabic, MD, PhD, MMSc; and Sally Okun, RN, MMHS. Rachael L. Fleurence, PhD moderated the plenary. 

A special Spotlight Session featured Harlan M. Krumholz, MD, SM and was entitled, “Reinventing the Future of Knowledge Generation in Healthcare.” Dr Krumholz identified the key impediments to progress in generating the knowledge needed in healthcare and described the vital role of patients and the public as partners. 

The second plenary, “Digital Health—Help or Hype?,” explored the evidence to assess where digital technologies have improved health and where promises in digital health are mainly hype. Speakers included Chris A. Jones, DPhil, MSc; Ejim E. Mark, MD, MPH, MBA; and Nadia A. Sam-Agudu, MD. Daniel Mullins, PhD moderated the discussion. 

The third plenary, “Examining the Role of Patient Preferences to Inform Regulatory Decisions,” featured a lively debate on the strengths and limitations of stated-preference research and the extent to which patients’ views on benefit-risk tradeoffs for medical therapies can be relied upon to inform regulatory decisions. The session featured panelists Jeff Shuren, MD, JD; Matt Reaney, MSc; and Bennett Levitan, MD, PhD with Shelby D. Reed, PhD serving as moderator. 

ISPOR 2018 hosted sessions on a wide variety of vital topics in the field of HEOR, including patient experience data, cost-effectiveness analysis, patient-centeredness, rising prescription drug costs, value assessment, artificial intelligence, and drug spending in the US. An update on the new ISPOR Health Economics and Outcomes Research Competencies Framework™ was presented. The Society’s new Women in Health Economics and Outcomes Research initiative held a session featuring the President and CEO of the Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association, Laurie Cooke as the special guest speaker. ISPOR 2018 also featured a number of other seminal invitational sessions including the Health Technology Assessment/Pharmacy and Therapeutics Roundtable, Patient Representatives Roundtable, and numerous council, working group, and global engagement group meetings. 

The Society recognized the honorees of its ISPOR 2018 Awards Program at the conference. Among those honored were F. Reed Johnson, PhD who received the Avedis Donabedian Lifetime Achievement Award for his outstanding, life-long contribution to the improvement of health outcomes and Finn Børlum Kristensen, PhD, MD who received the Marilyn Dix Smith Leadership Award for his extraordinary leadership to the Society. 

ISPOR CEO and Executive Director Nancy S. Berg stated, “ISPOR 2018 convened leaders in health economics and outcomes research from across the globe to discuss today’s vital issues in healthcare. The focus on digital health, real-world evidence, and the changing healthcare landscape could not be timelier. ISPOR’s mission to improve healthcare decision making was infused throughout the conference and the Society continues to serve as a resource for both individual decision makers and healthcare systems.” 

Additional information on ISPOR 2018 can be found here. Released presentations from the conference can be found here. Press releases from the conference can be found here. Interested parties can follow news and developments from the conference on social media using the hashtag #ISPORBaltimore.



ISPOR, the professional society for health economics and outcomes research (HEOR), is an international, multistakeholder, nonprofit dedicated to advancing HEOR excellence to improve decision making for health globally. The Society is the leading source for scientific conferences, peer-reviewed and MEDLINE®-indexed publications, good practices guidance, education, collaboration, and tools/resources in the field.
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Meeting Link: ISPOR 2018, May-2018