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The Official News & Technical Journal Of The International Society For Pharmacoeconomics And Outcomes Research
ISPOR Avedis Donabedian Outcomes Research Lifetime Achievement Awardee: Michael F. Drummond PhD

This following transcript was taken from the Awards Presentation at the Second Plenary Session of the ISPOR 9th Annual International Meeting, on May 18,2004,Arlington, VA, USA. Avedis Donabedian Award Committee Chairman Bryan Luce, PhD, MBA presented the award to 2004 recipient Michael Drummond, PhD. Below, is Dr. Luce’s presentation, followed by Dr. Drummond’s acceptance speech.

Bryan Luce PhD, MBA
First, I want to recognize my fellow committee members: Penny Erickson, Kevin Schulman, and Adrian Towse. Dan Mullins was an unofficial committee member and also was helpful. The Avedis Donabedian Lifetime Achievement award is awarded to Professor Michael Drummond. Michael received his PhD in Economics at the University of York in 1983. He previously received degrees in engineering and business administration. Since 1995 he has been the P rofessor of Health Economics and the Director of the Center of Health Economics of the University of York; and from 1998 he has also served as a Vice President of Innovus Research.

Michael has seemingly consulted with nearly every important organizations and government agency of which I am aware, including the World Health Organization, the Canadian Government, the Australian government, the European Union, the U.S. National Institutes of Health, the Pan American Health Organization, probably most important health organizations in the United Kingdom but certainly the Department of Health, the National Health Service and the National Institute for Clinical Excellence. He has served on too many committees to possibly list here this afternoon, but they do include the UK Medicines Commission and the NICE Guidelines Advisory Committee.

Mike is a past President of the International Society of Technology Assessment in Health Care and a recent director of ISPOR. His curriculum vita is so voluminous, it is hard to hold! It lists 474 publications, although I admit that this is overstated because it lists two papers that are in press! To most of us, Mike is best known for the Drummond , Stoddart, and Torrance book that we all saw put up on the screen Monday morning during Mike’s wonderful tribute to our dear colleague, Bernie O’Brien. The book is titled Methods for the Economic Evaluation of Health Care Programmes. This classic text, published by Oxford University Press originally in 1997 is being prepared for the 3rd edition. Many of us here today, and many of today’s future students, learn our trade through this book.

Mike and the authors he chooses to work with know how to turn a phrase. Just listen to some of the titles of the articles that he authored or co-authored: “A Stitch in Time ”;“Evidence Based Medicine and Cost Effectiveness: Uneasy Bed Fellows”; “ Willingness to Pay for What?”; “The Rationing Debate in the United Kingdom”; “Is Disease Management Relevant to Europe?”; “Effectiveness and Efficiency in NICE: A Nice Start but Evidence Costs Money”; “Do Healthcare Decision Makers Find Economic Evaluations Useful?”; “Conflict of Interest in Industry Sponsored Economic Evaluations: Real or Imagined?”; “ Time for a Change in Drug Licensing Requirements?”; “Economic Evaluations of Pharmaceuticals: Science or Marketing?”; “Australian Guidelines for Cost Effectiveness Studies of Pharmaceuticals The Thin End of the Boomerang?”

These titles were obviously selected by Mike and his co-authors to capture the attention and imagination of the reader; but mainly, I believe, they were selected to draw attention to key methods-policy issues that our societies face. I chose theses title to emphasize Mike’s attention to communicating ideas and to attempt to convey the huge impact he has had in our field. Of course, Mike has also authored and co-authored numerous important empirical research studies, models and methods treaties. However, in the Committee’s opinion, Mike’s most importan t contribution to outcomes research is as a great communicator (which used to be the tag line for Ronald Reagan). In his role as communicator, Mike draws on an extraordinarily clear mind and a wonderfully efficient ability to synthesize ideas. He sees patterns in complex issues and can organize them seemingly spontaneously and communicate either orally or in writing with utmost clarity. He is an amazing writer. It is said that he will pen an article on a plane in long hand and that it will be a nearly finished draft by the time he lands. Mike effectively communicates our methods, the applications of our methods and the policy implications of our methods to ourselves, to clinicians and to policy makers.

On a more personal note, Mike is a gentle, good-humored soul, often funny and, if we are lucky, we may witness his wit in a few minutes. He is a terrific collaborator, a wonderful friend and colleague to so many of us and I could not be more honored that I am standing before you, his peers, to present to Professor Michael Frank Drummond , ISPOR’s highest award, the Avedis Donabedian Outcomes Research Lifetime Achievement Award.

Michael F. Drummond PhD
Thanks Bryan, I would like to thank the committee and the Society for giving me this award. There is something rather nice about being recognized by your peers. Bryan mentioned some of my achievements. I would just like to give you a few reflections. In my 20 or so years in this field, there have obviously been many methodological developments. One of the problems with having a long CV is that you are embarrassed by 473 of the papers and hopefully your last one was OK, but I would say that the biggest change in this time has been not so much in the methods but in the use of these studies. Bryan was right in saying that the thing that interests me most is the use of pharmacoeconomics studies in decision-making and hopefully they make an important contribution. When I began in pharmacoeconomics, the only people that would read my papers were the University Promotions and Tenure Committee and my Mother, who has always been a great fan of my work! But now, of course, these studies are read by important people making very important decisions. You know, a few years ago people used to ask: Well, why are we doing these studies? Now they are asking me how quickly you can get it done. And I think that this change in the use of the studies is a tribute to many people in this room, not just to me. Thank you very much.


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