Is The Public Engaged In Health Technology Assessment?

Published Jan 17, 2013
Queensland, Australia - Many health jurisdictions are moving towards greater public involvement in health technology assessment. Dr. Jennifer Whitty, PhD, Senior Lecturer with the Centre for Applied Health Economics and Deputy Director of the Population and Social Health Research Program at Griffith Health Institute, Griffith University explored how, why and to what extent patients and the public are engaged in health technology assessment processes and decision-making. For the exploration, Dr. Whitty undertook an international web-based survey of 39 organisations involved in health technology assessment. The survey findings suggest that two thirds of the responding organisations undertake public engagement activities such as public hearings, consultation via interactive websites, or focus groups. Mechanisms based on one-way communication or consultations were the most common; although, some organisations have used or intend to use participatory approaches such as citizens’ juries or consensus conferences. The findings suggest engagement is undertaken for a range of reasons, but a number of challenges to engagement were also identified. Dr. Whitty says “This survey provides further insight into the public engagement approaches that are used by health technology assessment organisations in practice.” The study, “An international survey of the public engagement practices of Health Technology Assessment Organisations,” is published inValue in Health, the official journal of the International Society for Pharmacoeconomics and Outcomes Research (ISPOR).

Value in Health (ISSN 1098-3015) publishes papers, concepts, and ideas that advance the field of pharmacoeconomics and outcomes research as well as policy papers to help health care leaders make evidence-based decisions. The journal is published bi-monthly and has over 8,000 subscribers (clinicians, decision makers, and researchers worldwide).

International Society for Pharmacoeconomics and Outcomes Research (ISPOR) is a nonprofit, international, educational and scientific organization that strives to increase the efficiency, effectiveness, and fairness of health care resource use to improve health.

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