Health Technology Assessment

Health technologies encompass any service used to promote health or to prevent, identify or treat disease. This includes pharmaceuticals, medical devices, medical procedures, medical tests and health programs. In performing a health technology assessment, we use a well-defined process that generally includes the conduct of systematic reviews and a health-economic analysis.

The CTC has a contract with the Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing to undertake assessments on behalf of the Medical Services Advisory Committee (MSAC). The role of MSAC is to advise the Minister for Health and Ageing on whether a new medical service should be publicly funded, on the basis of an assessment of its comparative safety, effectiveness, cost-effectiveness and total cost, using the best available evidence. This process ensures that Australians have access to safe and clinically effective medical services, via listing on the Medicare Benefits Scheme (MBS), that represent value for money for the Australian health-care system.

The CTC has also conducted health technology assessments for other areas of the Department of Health and Ageing, including the Population Health Division, MBS Quality Framework (in collaboration with HealthConsult), the Nationally Funded Centres Program, the Diagnostics Services Branch and the Assisted Reproductive Technologies Review Committee.

Our health technology assessment work is also part of our research program and is closely linked to research in test evaluation. We are members of Health Technology Assessment International and participate in the annual conference.

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Informing policy

At the CTC we evaluate new health technologies to inform policy making in health care.