Health Technology Assessment International

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Meeting: 
Seventy-second World Health Assembly (A72/1)
Agenda Item: 
11.7 Access to medicines and vaccines
Statement: 

Health Technology Assessment (HTAi) is the global, non-profit, scientific and professional society for all those who produce, use or encounter HTA.
HTAi believes that a key component of successfully improving access is engaging all relevant stakeholders in decisions, policies and processes. By this we mean we should include government policy and decision makers, payers, providers, regulators, researchers, clinicians, patients, citizens, manufacturers of technologies and of course HTA agencies and experts.
As an example of what can be achieved in a neutral environment, we would like to draw the attention to the consensus statement from our 2018 Asia Policy Forum available at www.htai.org. This meeting convened senior government and HTA agency representatives from 13 Asian countries and manufacturers who all agreed on the key issues related to improving access to high cost technologies and the use of managed entry schemes (MES).
From the consensus statement, we know that the overall budget impact of an intervention is key when introducing a medicine or vaccine. However we must also consider the potential value and impact with regard to patient and health outcomes that can be possible with higher cost technologies. MES are mechanisms that may facilitate patient access to healthcare that may otherwise be challenging for health systems to adopt.
The statement further highlights that rules of engagement may be a useful tool. This could identify the issues and potential solutions and provide countries with guidance for the introduction of new and innovative drugs, devices and treatments for rare diseases. The definition and introduction of high-cost technologies must be context and country specific. If an intervention is introduced with an MES then its use could be restricted/removed or broadened if the evidence demonstrates that the outcomes are fulfilled. Key to successfully improving access to high cost technologies ability to build relationships and trust.