OBJECTIVES: This study aimed (1) to perform a systematic literature review of instruments for measuring productivity loss of paid and unpaid work and (2) to assess the suitability (in terms of identification, measurement, and valuation) of these instruments for use in health economic evaluations from a societal perspective.
METHODS: Articles published from 2018 were sourced from PubMed/Medline, PsycInfo, Embase, and Econlit. Using 2 separate search strategies, eligible economic evaluations and validation studies were selected and unique measurement instruments identified. A data-extraction form was developed by studying previous literature and consulting an international panel of experts in the field of productivity costs. This data-extraction form was applied to assess the suitability of instruments for use in economic evaluations.
RESULTS: A total of 5982 articles were retrieved from the databases, of which 99 economic evaluations and 9 validation studies were included in the review. A total of 42 unique measurement instruments were identified. Nine instruments provided quantified measures of absenteeism, presenteeism, and unpaid work. Five instruments supplied the necessary information to enable the use of at least 1 common valuation method. The Health and Labour Questionnaire-Short Form, Health and Labour Questionnaire, and Institute for Medical Technology Assessment Productivity Cost Questionnaire met both criteria. Nevertheless, the developers replaced the Health and Labour Questionnaire-Short Form and Health and Labour Questionnaire by the more recently developed Institute for Medical Technology Assessment Productivity Cost Questionnaire.
CONCLUSIONS: Although many instruments for measuring productivity loss were identified, most were not suitable for capturing productivity changes for economic evaluations from a societal perspective. Future research can benefit from this study by making an informed instrument choice for the measurement of productivity loss of paid and unpaid work.