BLOG – Teaching the basics of health technology assessment

NICE has launched a free learning course that provides an introduction to health technology assessment (HTA).

[This blog post is reproduced with permission of NICE from the original here]

The course is made up of six learning modules and can be found on the EHDEN Academy website. The EHDEN Academy is a free learning resource, focusing on providing the knowledge, skills, and tools to access and use real-world evidence.

Innovative medical technologies and devices are increasingly important in delivering positive health outcomes and driving health efficiencies. The rapid pace of transformation makes this an important and pivotal area of health care for the future.

The Introduction to HTA course was developed by colleagues in the Science Policy and Research team and NICE International. It provides a summary of the basic concepts that underpin NICE’s guidance-producing activities. These include the methods we use to assess the clinical and cost effectiveness of health technologies, and the principle of, which reflects that money from a fixed budget can only be spent once, and doing so foregoes the benefits of spending it on other health care activities. The course also explains how real-world evidence can be used to inform HTA-led decision making, including the benefits and potential barriers to doing so.

The course is maintained by the European Health Data Evidence Network (EHDEN), an EU Innovative Medicines Initiative grant-funded research project, where NICE is a collaborating partner.

EHDEN seeks to support access to and the use of standardised real-world data from across Europe. Our involvement in this work will address the need to make better use of real-world data to resolve evidence gaps. It also supports NICE’s strategic objective of establishing leadership in data, research, and science, alongside our other research collaborations including GetReal InitiativeHARMONY and Next Generation Health Technology Assessment (HTx).

NICE’s contribution to the EHDEN Academy is an example of our engagement in international, multistakeholder activities, and in cutting-edge methodological research. The official announcement can be found on the EHDEN website.


Dr Dalia Dawoud

Senior Scientific Adviser within NICE's science, policy and research programme