Contingent Valuation Study

The Challenge:

Estimates of value of statistical life (VSL) are derived from studies of individuals’ willingness to pay for small changes in their own mortality risks. Few studies have been conducted to estimate VSL in low- and middle-income countries, raising questions related to how to best estimate VSL in this context.

Our Approach:

Following the recommendation of the Expert Advisory meeting in February 2017 to perform a contingent valuation study, the team reviewed the literature and participated in high-level discussions with experts in this field to make a preliminary assessment of how much it would take to pilot various willingness to pay/contingent valuation methods. The team is preparing to conduct a pilot contingent valuation study to fill the following gaps in evidence: (i) limited evidence on the trade-offs people make between income and mortality risk in low- and middle-income countries, which capture value beyond averting productivity losses; (ii) a lack of consensus concerning contingent valuation methods; the fact that there are many methods impedes the ability of stakeholders to differentiate between strong methodological studies and weak ones.

The team will work in health facilities in Bangladesh to pilot contingent valuation methods. These will be the same facilities that are currently participating in the cost of illness study. During this time, the team will do the following: (i) perform a comparison of up to four contingent valuation methods to estimate the value of pneumonia, measles and rotavirus vaccines; (ii) assess target populations of choice; (iii) determine how to deal with bias and unrepresentativeness of results; (iv) determine how to better elicit valid responses from low literacy/numeracy populations; and (v) report on pilot study results.