Document Type: Review Article
Department of Computing and Information Technology, University of Wollongong, Wollongong, Australia
Health technology assessment (HTA) is an evaluative process used to inform technology-related policymaking in healthcare. Interest in involving patients in the HTA process is increasing. Patients can provide additional perspectives to those of other groups that are concerned with health technology. Information on patients’ perspectives is preferably obtained through reviews of published studies. Primary research approaches can be used if good quality, published evidence is unavailable. There are good examples of input from patients influencing the scope or preparation of HTA reports and subsequent consideration of these reports by decision-makers. One challenge to achieving effective patient involvement is finding suitable resources for patient organizations and HTA agencies. There is also a need for the further development of methods, for example, for use in rapid evidence reviews. HTA programs and the decision-makers they inform have to make choices about when patient input is appropriate. Such choices will include considering which questions or aspects of a technology requires such input and the expected time lines for assessment.