Publication Date



knee conditions, outcome measures, questionnaire, value of care, willingness to pay, orthopaedics


Purpose: The high cost of orthopaedic care has attracted criticism in the current value-based health care environment. The objective of this work was to assess the properties of a willingness to pay (WTP)-based approach to estimate the monetary value that patients place on health improvements in chronic knee conditions following orthopaedic treatment.

Methods: A sample of patients with a chronic knee condition were surveyed between January and May of 2018 at a large orthopaedic practice. Each patient provided their WTP for restoration to ideal knee health and completed the Single Assessment Numerical Evaluation (SANE) to describe their baseline knee state. Average WTP was calculated for the total sample and stratified by income, age, and baseline SANE (for which 0 is the worst and 100 is the best) levels. The patient-perceived monetary value of each unit of SANE improvement was assessed.

Results: The study sample included 86 patients seeking orthopaedic care for a chronic knee condition. Mean baseline SANE score was 45.5 (standard deviation: 25.0). Mean WTP to obtain ideal knee function from baseline was $18,704 (standard deviation: $18,040). For the full sample, patients valued a 1-unit improvement in SANE score at $291.1 (β: 291.1; P < 0.05). The amount of money patients were willing to pay to achieve ideal knee function varied with age, income, and baseline knee state.

Conclusions: Patients appear to highly value improvement in chronic knee conditions. Willingness-to-pay survey results appear to track expected variation in patient outcome valuation by income and baseline knee condition and could be a valuable approach to assess value-based care in orthopaedics.




September 9th, 2020


October 16th, 2020


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