Also referred to as a health technology appraisal, a health technology assessment (HTA) aims to guide the allocation of healthcare resources and inform reimbursement decisions. It assesses the clinical effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of a new intervention, in comparison with alternative interventions.
Each HTA is supported by economic evaluation, which estimates how resources should be allocated to maximise overall utility, and by clinical evidence on the safety, efficacy, and quality of the treatment.
An HTA includes:
- A definition of the evaluation scope,
- A systematic review of the clinical and economic evidence,
- An estimation of the cost-effectiveness, usually via economic modelling,
- An interpretation of the results to inform justifiable healthcare recommendations.
To ensure the information is presented consistently and appropriately to HTA bodies, HTA proposals are usually structured based on a “reference case”, which in the United Kingdom is provided by the NICE manual.