The National Centre for Health Technology Assessment (HTA), established on March 2, 2016 by a decree of the Ministry of Health, as part of the approval of the organization and operation regulations of the Istituto Superiore di Sanità (ISS), began its activity in January 2017.
The Centre's mission is to improve quality, standards and value for money by integrating HTA principles and methodologies into health service planning and clinical practice at all levels. [Decree 02/03 /2016 - "Approvalof the organization and regulation of the Istituto Superiore di Sanità" – Published in the Italian Official Gazette of the Italian Republic no. 88 of 15/04/2016].
The activities envisage the development of the new Italian HTA system. In line with the institutional mission of the ISS, the Centre is structuring its activity by focusing on research, control, consulting, regulation and training activities.
The program of activities provides that the technology assessment activity is carried out in all phases of the life cycle of the technologies as well as in connection with the National System of Guidelines (SNLG), provided for by Law 24/2017 and managed by the ISS through the activity of the National Center for Clinical Excellence, Health Quality and Safety.
The Centre evalutes the health technologies included in the broader definition of HTA that is given by the International Network of Agencies (INAHTA), by the European Network for Health Technology Assessment (EUnetHTA) and the Italian Society of Health TechnologyAssessment (SIHTA) including drugs, devices, medical and surgical procedures used in healthcare, as well as measures for the prevention and rehabilitation of diseases, and the organisational and support systems in which healthcare is provided.
The Centre aims to support the decision-making process by producing information on the clinical, economic, organizational, social, legal and ethical effects of health technologies inserted in specific health contexts.
The Centre collaborates with the Institutions that deal with HTA, both at national level (Ministry of Health, AIFA and AGENAS), and at the regional and local level, both by promoting and participating in specific project activities consistent with the mission of the Centre.
The Centre's development strategy focuses mainly on:
- creating evidence on new technologies and those already in use in clinical practice in order to contribute to the evaluation of their real value
- synthesizing and evaluating evidence to produce HTA documents
- encouraging the increase in the use of HTA documents in the planning and programming activities of the National Health Service (NHS) at national, regional and local level, as well as in clinical practice