What is HUG?
The Health Utilities Group (HUG)
is a multi-disciplinary group of researchers and scientists based in the
Department of Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics (CE & B) at McMaster
University, Hamilton, Canada. HUG develops and applies systems for measuring
the health status and health-related quality of life of individuals, clinical
groups and general populations. The HUG team meets on a regular basis to
plan and manage research projects related to developing and applying tools
for measuring health status and health-related quality of life utility
HUG members include: David Feeny,
William Furlong, George Torrance, Charles Goldsmith, Ronald Barr, Michael
Boyle, John Horsman, and Sonja De Pauw. HUG has close ties to the Departments
of Clinical Epidemiology & Biostatistics, Psychiatry, and Surgery at
McMaster University; the Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences
and the Departments of Public Health Sciences and Economics at the University of Alberta; the Institute of Health Economics
in Edmonton, AB; as well as private-sector companies and government agencies
involved with health research.
For contact information on HUG members, click Contacts
HUG members developed the Health
Utilities Index (HUITM) ‘family’ of classification
and preference-based scoring functions during the past 20 years. The HUITM
has been included in more than 200 clinical studies, and every major Canadian
general population health survey since 1990.
The HUI group co-operates internationally
with informal groups in France, the U.K., the Netherlands, Austria, Japan,
Current research activities include:
HUITM methodology and scoring.
Development of methods for direct utility
assessment using visual analogue scales, standard gamble and time trade-off
HUITM applications in pediatric oncology
(including surveys in Argentina, Canada, Uruguay, the UK), haematology
(bleeding disorders), neurofibromatosis, neonatology, surgery (including
lung volume reduction, neurosurgery, splenectomy, cholecystectomy,
population health (norms for general populations and selected sub-populations
including groups having arthritis and stroke).
MI Rehabilitation RCT and economic evaluation.
Neonatology outcome studies.
Prenatal diagnosis and health-related
quality of life.
Population health (including determinants
Economic evaluations of health care
A few fundamental references
related the development of HUITM, direct preference measurement techniques,
and integration of quality of life assessments in economic evaluations
Drummond MF, O'Brien B, Stoddart GL,
Torrance GW. Methods for Economic Evaluation of Health Care Programmes:
Second Edition. Oxford: Oxford University Press 1997.
Feeny D, Torrance GW. Incorporating
utility-based quality-of-life assessment measures in clinical trials: two
examples. Medical Care 1989;27(3):S190-S204.
Feeny DH, Torrance GW, Labelle R.
Integrating Economic Evaluations and Quality of Life Assessments.
In: B. Spilker (ed) Quality of Life and Pharmacoeconomics in Clinical Trials
- Second Edition. Philadelphia: Lippencot-Raven, 1996; 85-95.
Furlong W, Feeny D, Torrance GW, Barr
RD, Horsman J. Guide to design and development of health-state utility
instrumentation. Hamilton, Canada: McMaster University Centre for
Health Economics and Policy Analysis Working Paper 90-9, 1990.
Torrance GW, Thomas WH, Sacket DL.
A utility maximization model for evaluation of health care programs.
Health Services Research 1972;7:118-133.
Torrance GW. Measurement of health state
utilities for economic evaluation - a review. Journal of Health Economics
Torrance GW, Feeny D. Utilities
and quality-adjusted life years. International Journal of Technology
Assessment in Health Care 1989;5(4):559-575.
Related Quality of Life Research
HUG / HUI "HUG" updated - December 17, 1999
HUG Webpages designed and maintained by John R. Horsman, CE&B