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Pharmacoeconomics. 2017 Jul;35(7):727-740. doi: 10.1007/s40273-017-0509-1.

Emerging Use of Early Health Technology Assessment in Medical Product Development: A Scoping Review of the Literature.

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Department of Health Technology and Services Research, University of Twente, Enschede, The Netherlands.
Evidence Synthesis and Health Economics Unit, Luxembourg Institute of Health, Strassen, Luxembourg.
Department of Health Technology and Services Research, University of Twente, Enschede, The Netherlands.
ICON plc., Oxford, UK.
Toronto Health Economics and Technology Assessment Collaborative, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada.


Early health technology assessment is increasingly being used to support health economic evidence development during early stages of clinical research. Such early models can be used to inform research and development about the design and management of new medical technologies to mitigate the risks, perceived by industry and the public sector, associated with market access and reimbursement. Over the past 25 years it has been suggested that health economic evaluation in the early stages may benefit the development and diffusion of medical products. Early health technology assessment has been suggested in the context of iterative economic evaluation alongside phase I and II clinical research to inform clinical trial design, market access, and pricing. In addition, performing early health technology assessment was also proposed at an even earlier stage for managing technology portfolios. This scoping review suggests a generally accepted definition of early health technology assessment to be "all methods used to inform industry and other stakeholders about the potential value of new medical products in development, including methods to quantify and manage uncertainty". The present review also aimed to identify recent published empirical studies employing an early-stage assessment of a medical product. With most included studies carried out to support a market launch, the dominant methodology was early health economic modeling. Further methodological development is required, in particular, by combining systems engineering and health economics to manage uncertainty in medical product portfolios.

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