How do you measure a year? Your desk calendar might suggest months or days. The musical “Rent” famously offered 525,600 minutes and a number of other more creative metrics.
Ask a progressive health policy expert, though, and they may give you the most shocking option of all. For years, progressives have attempted to build their policy proposals around “quality-adjusted life years,” or QALYs. This approach ostensibly assigns a dollar amount to a year of human life.
Many Americans find that kind of calculation grotesque. And a substantial portion of Congress does, too. Last month, the House Energy and Commerce Committee approved a bill that would bar federal agencies from using QALYs to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of drugs and treatments.