I’m a Research Fellow at The University of Queensland’s Centre for the Business and Economics of Health (CBEH). My research expertise mainly focuses on applied health economics and health services research. I’m passionate about identifying healthcare interventions that provide the best value for money and cooperate with consumer preferences for the healthcare decision-making process. I believe consumers and healthcare providers play an important role in designing healthcare interventions more suited to their needs. Part of my research is based on choice modelling, where I can quantify consumers' preferences for different attributes of healthcare services and incorporate them into decision-making processes. I am a member of the health technology assessment team at CBEH that evaluates submissions made to the Australian Government to reimburse new medicines and medical devices through the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) and the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS).

My research covers different areas of health including oral health, mental health, cardiovascular diseases, occupational violence prevention, consumer preferences for cancer follow-up care and emergency services. I collaborate with researchers, clinical experts, qualitative experts, online survey companies and healthcare institutions to evaluate the effectiveness of healthcare interventions in both hospital and community settings.

Research interests

Health economics: identifying health care interventions with the best value for money and measuring the effectiveness of existing and new health interventions.

Consumer preferences and choice modelling: applying choice modelling to understand consumer preferences over different health care characteristics and incorporating choice modelling analysis to design health care based on consumer preferences.

Patient reported outcome measures and health state valuations: development of preference-based measures and utility algorithms to facilitate the outcomes measured in health economic evaluations.

Research impact and partnerships

I developed the first oral health preference-based measure and the utility algorithm. This instrument and the utility algorithm facilitate economic evaluations of oral health interventions targeted at children and adolescents. Currently, I am working with a Swedish research team undertaking a project to translate and validate the oral health preference-based instrument and inform the development of tariffs. I have prepared evaluation reports for the Medical Services Advisory Committee for a range of medical services including interventional and diagnostic procedures, which has directly influenced policy and practice.

I collaborate with The University of Queensland School of Dentistry and Metro South Hospital and Health Service oral health services on research projects to improve oral health of the vulnerable populations including children and elderly adults living in residential aged care facilities.


To find out how we can collaborate and bring value to your organisation, I can be contacted via:
 Email - r.hettiarachchi@uq.edu.au
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