Unlocking access to the best health technology

Wednesday, 27 May 2015

Despite the needs of patients steadily increasing around the world, healthcare continues to be inaccessible and too expensive for many people. New technology is beginning to change this but must be evaluated properly.

Health technology assessment (HTA) - the processes used to decide which medicines and treatments are available for patients - allows policy makers to understand more about the quality, cost, value and appropriate use of technology, and how this can improve the lives of patients.

In mid-June, our Policy Manager Alison Lightbourne will attend Health Technology Assessment International's (HTAi) Annual Conference to discuss the importance of in HTA. Patients can offer a unique point of view to improve HTA, and in turn, improve access and quality of treatment for people around the world.

IAPO’s involvement with HTA

HTAi is a global group that brings together organizations working to assess and approve new medicines, devices and treatments. We work closely with the Patient and Citizen Special Interest Group within HTAi, a voluntary team of people from around the world who work to develop patient and citizen involvement in HTA processes.

At the 6th Global Patients Congress in 2014, the Values and Standards on Patient and Citizen Involvement in HTA were launched. IAPO translated these into Spanish and shared them with members at the Latin American Regional Meeting in August last year.

Since then, the special interest group has been working on a Patients Charter that will outline what patients and patients’ groups should expect when interacting with HTA agencies, and continuing to highlight core values and standards for patient involvement in HTA.

HTAi Annual General Meeting

This year’s meeting is focused on the latest thinking about how to share HTA learning and implement decisions informed by HTA. The HTA Patient and Citizen Special Interest Group will be holding sessions on how to use resources to improve patient involvement, remove barriers and implement the Values and Quality Standards for Patient Involvement in HTA.

At the heart of this work is a belief that HTA can be further strengthened by listening to patients more and learning from their unique knowledge gained from living with a condition.

We want to hear from you

In preparation for the meeting, we want to hear from you. We want to understand what patients and patients’ groups have experienced around HTA. Please share your thoughts with us on these questions:

The tools from the HTA International Special Interest Group are being developed to support patients and to advocate to HTA agencies about the importance of patient involvement.

Please do let us know about your experience with HTA in your countries by emailing our Policy Manager Alison by 9 June 2015.