Determining the Willingness to Pay for Innovative Oncology Medicines in Malaysia [Editor's Choice]



Early access to innovative oncology medicine is crucial to provide better treatment alternatives to patients with cancer. However, innovative oncology medicines often come at higher prices, thus limiting the government’s ability for its universal coverage. Hence an alternative paying mechanism is needed. This study is intended to determine the willingness to pay (WTP) for innovative oncology medicines among Malaysians.


A cross-sectional contingent valuation study on 571 Malaysians was conducted to elicit respondents’ WTP value via bidding game approach. A double-bounded dichotomous choice was used in 3 hypothetical scenarios: innovative diabetes medicine, innovative oncology medicine one-off (IOMO), and innovative oncology medicine insurance. Univariate logistic regression was used to determine the factors affecting respondent’s WTP, whereas the mean WTP value and the factors affecting amount to WTP was determined using a parametric 2-part model.


This study received 95% response rate. The mean age of the respondents is 48 years (SD 17) with majority of the respondents female (60.3%) and from ethnic Malay (62%). About 343 (64.7%) of the respondents expressed WTP for IOMO. Those in higher income bracket were willing to pay more for the access of IOMO than the overall WTP mean value (P = .046, coefficient 351.57).


More than half of Malaysian are willing to pay for IOMO at mean value of Malaysian Ringgit 279.10 (US dollar 66.77). Collaborative funding mechanisms and appropriate financial screening among the stakeholders could be introduced as methods to expedite the access of innovative oncology medicine among patients with cancer in Malaysia.


Mohd Redhuan Dzulkipli Asrul Akmal Shafie Siti Noorsuriani Maon Azuana Ramli Abdul Haniff Mohammad Yahaya See Wan Ho Nor Ilham Ainaa Muhsin Azmi Nor Mohd Farez Ahmat

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