Seminar speaker discusses the economics of patient decision-making

hauber gives a seminar

students attend seminar

SPOKANE, Wash. – On November 10 Senior Economist Brett Hauber spoke with Washington State University pharmacy students about patient decision-making based on the benefits and risks of health care alternatives.

Hauber is the vice president of Health Preference Assessment at RTI Health Solutions. This company conducts research and consulting for the pharmaceutical and biotech sector.

“Patient preference methods provide one set of tools for eliciting systematic, quantitative input from patients,” said Hauber. “Recently, much of the attention on patient preference methods has focused on benefit-risk analysis.”

Patient preference methods can provide three types of information. “What matters, how much it matters, and what tradeoff are patients willing to make among health outcomes,” said Hauber.

hauber gives a seminar

Benefit-risk analysis can be very helpful to pharmacists. “With this data you will be able to understand where your patients are coming from and discuss tradeoffs with them,” said Hauber. “If a medication doesn’t meet the patients need they probably won’t take it and get healthy.”

This presentation was part of the WSU College of Pharmacy’s Preparing for Your Career in Pharmacy Seminar Series. The purpose of the seminar series is to expose student pharmacists to career options and leaders within those fields.

“This area of research is a great opportunity for pharmacists because they have a unique perspective that others do no have to frame the research,” said Hauber. “They also have a greater role in health care delivery and have a unique opportunity to understand the preferences of their patients.”

Hauber has more than 15 years of experience in health and environment economics. He specializes in the measurement of preferences for medical treatments and outcomes.

The WSU pharmacy seminars are funded through the Dean’s Fund for Excellence and the college’s community partner, the Spokane Teachers Credit Union. For information on participating in the career seminar series, or to contribute to the Dean’s Fund for Excellence to help expose WSU student pharmacists to thought-leaders and industry innovators, contact the College of Pharmacy advancement office at or 509-358-7651.