Work Package 4 develops two generic models to guide future HTAs. The draft model for medical or surgical interventions is soon ready to be published. Work on the model for diagnostic technologies, as well as the practical testing of the model using multi-slice CT angiography as a topic will commence during the spring.
The models aim at capturing the “core of HTA” to support international utilisation of HTAs. Based on the core models, two core HTAs are conducted: one on drug eluting stents and the other on multi-slice CT. These will put the models into practical tests that provide feedback to further development of the models. Final versions of the core models and core HTAs will be ready in 2008.
Work is organized in 10 expert groups. One of the groups delineates the general design of the models and core HTAs. Two groups focus on describing the technology and its current use, and seven groups consider the following viewpoints of HTA: safety, effectiveness, costs and economic evaluation, ethics, organisation, social and legal aspects.
Each group aims at identifying pertinent issues for assessment within their domain. Issues are included in the generic structure of the model as assessment elements. The elements are rated for their importance and transferability, and various standards – such as preferred research methods – can be linked to them.
Use of the core model results in consistent HTA report structure that is formed through question-answer pairs, which helps readers find the information they are looking for. For example, if one is interested in the direct effects of a technology on mortality of patients, the information can be found at a standard location. The approach also enables computerized dissemination and utilisation of information.