National Centre for Pharmacoeconomics

National Centre for

NCPE Ireland

Clinical outcome

An outcome of major clinical importance that is defined on the basis of the disease being studied (e.g. fracture in osteoporosis, relapse rates).

Clinical significance

A conclusion that an intervention has an effect that is of practical meaning to patients and health care providers. Effects identified as statistically significant are not always clinically significant, because the effect is small or the outcome is not important.

Clinical trial

A carefully controlled and monitored research study on human subjects or patients evaluating one or more health interventions.  Each trial is designed to answer specific scientific questions.

Comparative effectiveness

The ability of one treatment, relative to another, to demonstrate clinical effectiveness


the alternative to which the intervention is compared


the value of opportunity forgone as a result of engaging resources in an activity

Cost benefit analysis (CBA)

An economic evaluation comparing alternative interventions in which costs and outcomes are quantified using the same monetary units

Cost consequences analysis

An economic evaluation in which the components of costs and consequences (health outcomes, adverse effects etc.) are measured and presented in their natural units, without any attempt to aggregate the outputs

Cost minimisation analysis (CMA)

An economic evaluation comparing the costs of different interventions that are assumed to produce equivalent benefits

Cost of illness analysis

A determination of the economic impact of a disease or health condition, including treatment costs.