QALMQuality-Adjusted Life Month (health measurement)
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While empiric therapy is associated with the best cost-utility ratio, doing a culture yields the greatest utility at greater incremental cost per QALM.
A QALM has a range of values from 0 to 1, where 0 is death and 1 is an optimal quality of life experienced for 1 month.
Each of these alternative decisions, while having greater effectiveness, have incremental costs of approximately $3000 per additional QALM, or $36,000 per additional QALY (with the exception of the dipstick urinalysis strategy, which has a marginal cost-effectiveness of $48,000 per additional QALM).