Continuing EFPIA’s #HealthyEU campaign, EFPIA’s appointed Communications Director, Liam English, highlights a new tool to help citizens connect with the Health Technology Assessment (HTA) process, which can support sustainable healthcare systems.
eMEET: Bringing the Patient Voice to HTA – patients should not have to be patient
Building a more ambitious and integrated life science strategy for Europe will require greater engagement of citizens in processes that determine what medicines they have access to. Many agree that in Europe we need to see accelerated access to new medicines. To this end, national authorities should develop a harmonised approach to medicines’ assessment and adopt a single approach to assess the value of medicines and reduce delays to market access.
Illnesses simply don’t wait.
Medical innovation doesn’t matter if people don’t have access to it. It may surprise you that obtaining regulatory approval does not guarantee the accessibility of a medicine. In many countries, new treatments and interventions go through a Health Technology Assessment (HTA) process to determine their availability to patients via the local reimbursement system. Governments use HTA to determine if a medicine offers value for money in comparison to alternative treatments. The process takes into consideration the impact on the health budget and other social, ethical and logistical aspects.
Since the HTA process leads to the decision of whether or not patients will have access to a specific medicine, they should be involved in the process. As Dr. Karen Facey, past chair of HTAi Interest Group for Patient/Citizen Involvement in HTA, explains, “when considering the value of a new treatment, not just science matters. Patients have a unique knowledge and perspectives that could be contributed, because only patients know what it is really like to live with an illness.”
Learn more! Visit the newly launched Medicine Evaluation Educational Training (eMEET) website. eMEET uses a variety of tools to educate people about the drug discovery and HTA processes. It also shows how valuable patients’ experiences are to these complex processes, and how we can all participate in the decisions made. We hope you will take the training and become involved in ensuring patients have access to the medicines they need. You can also find more information about the eMEET here.0