Given the growing interest for health technologies, PAHO has launched several initiatives in HTA with member countries to promote and strengthen health technology assessment in the Americas. PAHO's role is important for the development and implementation of HTA in the Americas, and to support the promotion of evidence based decision making processes, which contribute to the incorporation of cost effective technologies.
In 2012 member states adopted the resolution "Health Technology Assessment and incorporation into Health Systems" (CSP28.R9). The resolution proposes linking HTA with the decision-making processes involved in incorporating these technologies into health systems. Since the approval of CSP28.R9 there have been clear advances in the institutionalization of HTA in the Region, both at regional and national levels. Despite the major progress, the implementation of HTA remains at low level in some countries. PAHO encourages the establishment of an institutional framework for HTA-based decision-making. This framework would establish linkages between HTA and decision-makers, encouraging institutional responsibility and creating linkages between use of technologies and evaluative data to feed into the decision-making process.
To support the development of HTA in member countries, the Medicines and Health Technologies Unit is involved in many activities, such as:
- Human resources development: establishing a regional strategy to assess the different regional needs. Promotion of regional meetings, workshops, and training through on line courses, and webinars.
- Dissemination of information: identifying existing opportunities and disseminating findings amongst stakeholders and decision-makers, through the Regional Platform on Access and Innovation for Health Technologies (PRAIS).
- Rational use of health technologies: developing and implementing clinical guidelines to evaluate the use of health technologies in health services.
- Promotion of network collaboration: promotion of regional cooperation among member countries, strengthening the HTA Regional Network through the Regional Network of Health Technology Assessments for the Americas (RedETSA).