Integration of mechanisms for the generation and use of health evidence for decision making towards Universal Health
Kingston, November 14 to 16, 2023 (PAHO) – the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), through its Departments of Innovation, Access to Medicines and Health Technologies (IMT) and Evidence and Intelligence for Action in Health (EIH) conducted the joint meeting between the Health Technology Assessment Network of the Americas (RedETSA) and the Evidence-Informed Policy Network of the Americas (EVIPNet). The Minister of Health & Wellness of Jamaica, Dr the Honorable Christopher Tufton and the PAHO/WHO Representative to Jamaica, Bermuda and the Cayman Islands, Mr. Ian Stein, inaugurated this joint meeting, which was attended by more than 150 participants from 21 countries and 61 institutions.
In his opening remarks, the minister Tufton expressed that the meeting was a “historic event for Jamaica as a new member of RedETSA” and also mentions that the Ministry of Health “continues to mine our best available options to effectively and successfully tackle our most pressing public health challenges facing the Region – including non-communicable diseases (NCDs) and vaccine hesitancy, among others”. Mr. Ian Stein mentioned that the “collaborative gathering is significant and represents a new frontier in the healthcare sector in the Americas, especially for a small island developing state like Jamaica, which is on a path towards achieving universal health”.
This meeting served to identify successful experiences of integration of mechanisms for the generation and use of health evidence to inform decision-making towards Universal Health; advance in the institutionalization of health technology assessment (HTA) mechanisms to inform decision-making for incorporation of health technologies into health systems, and implement monitoring of technologies and policies; present and validate regional resources and tools for the adaptation/development of evidence-informed practice guidelines; and identify synergies and explore technical areas of collaboration between RedETSA, EVIPNet and the regional group of practice guidelines, in addition to other networks and groups that support the development of policies and practices informed by scientific evidence.
The event consisted of one day of open sessions featuring panels and roundtable dialogues, in which participants shared experiences. This was followed by a half-day of workshops on economic evaluation, communication for evidence-informed policies and Grading of Recommendations, Assessment, Development and Evaluation (GRADE), and finally, a day reserved for closed meetings for each network. The joint meeting facilitated beneficial partnerships, exchange of ideas, and in-person conversations.
RedETSA was created in June 2011 and currently has 42 members institutions from 21 countries. Its objective is to strengthen and promote the HTA process in the Americas, supporting information exchange and knowledge sharing, to support decision-making on incorporation and use and replacement of health technologies. For more information, visit: https://redetsa.bvsalud.org
EVIPNet is a network established by the World Health Organization in 2006 to promote the systematic use of data and research evidence in the formulation of health policies. EVIPNet Americas has supported countries since 2007, promoting national mechanisms to facilitate the regular use of research evidence; providing members with a reliable and trustworthy source of scientific evidence; and for the better use of regional resources through the development of multi-country networks using local networks with a similar organizational dynamic. Visit: https://www.who.int/initiatives/evidence-informed-policy-network