High expectations are related to innovations in the healthcare sector with respect to improving the treatment of diseases, saving healthcare expenditures and generating employment. Particularly the large chronic diseases need more target-group specific, innovative interventions.
The benefits of health technology assessment (HTA) to improve the evidence-base for medical treatment are generally accepted. However, the potentials of HTA are not fully exploited yet. In classical HTA, which is focussed on health outcomes and economic performance of therapies, the innovation component is nearly totally missing. Thus, advances in medical technologies in their early states are not sufficiently utilized. The present project aims at helping to close the gap between the development of new health technologies and their application.
A generic methodology for the evaluation of health innovations is developed. It expands the focus of HTA to include aspects of the technology as such, its scientific foundation, potentials, implementation and effects on society as well as implications of adoption or non-adoption.
This methodology is developed in five steps:
1. Adoption of an innovation system approach to the healthcare system
2. Overview of approaches to the evaluation of innovations within classical HTA
3. Elaboration and validation of health innovation indicators
4. Development of a broad consensus on assessment criteria and indicators
5. Refinement of the indicators and dissemination to the HTA and healthcare community Main result is an internationally agreed set of indicators for the assessment of health innovations, which can generically be used to analyse new technologies in an early stage.
The set of indicators will support the use of HTA in a field of novel therapies where classical HTA is not applicable. It will provide the relevant stakeholder groups with structured information for their decision-making about the impact of emerging healthcare technologies.
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