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Washington DC, November 26, 2019 (PAHO / WHO) —The Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), the Costa Rican Social Security Fund, and the Ministry of Health of Costa Rica held the XI Meeting of the Evaluation Network of Health Technologies of the Americas (RedETSA, in Spanish), from 12-14 November, in the city of San José, Costa Rica.

"Health technologies are key for the quality of health care that people receive and for the possibility of achieving universal health," said María Dolores Pérez Rosales, PAHO Representative in Costa Rica. The Minister of Health of Costa Rica, Daniel Salas Peraza, and the Executive President of the Costa Rican Social Security Fund, Román Macaya Hayes, also participated at the opening of the XI Meeting.

More than 530 people from 18 countries attended the meeting, including delegates from the ministries of health, social insurance entities, regulatory authorities, health technology assessment agencies, PAHO/WHO collaborating centers and education and research institutions in the Region of the Americas.

The agenda focused on an integrated approach to health technology assessment, decision making, rational use, and monitoring of health technologies. Representatives of the Network, and invited experts, shared their experiences on issues such as the challenges of the Health Technology Assessment (HTA) from the perspective of decision-makers, networking, HTA applied to medical devices, good HTA practices, and indicators for monitoring the use of health technologies.

PAHO and RedETSA disseminated some of the past achievements, such as the growth of more than 400% in the number of users of the Regional Database of Health Technology Assessment Reports in the Americas (BRISA), and an institutional video of BRISA was also launched to expand its impact in the Region.

The new version of the List of Medical Devices for the First Level of Care and the application to the context of Costa Rica and Uruguay of the model developed by PAHO for the cost-effectiveness of transplants compared to dialysis techniques were presented.

On November 14, was held a closed meeting of the members of RedETSA, which currently has 34 institutions from 17 countries. PAHO, in its role as Secretariat of the Network, shared the main results of the Network in 2019. Representatives of the Working Groups presented their progress on issues such as Real World Evidence, budget impact, unit cost base, HTA for medical devices, and adaptation of HTA reports. Finally, participants discussed the possibilities for international collaboration and established the Network's work plan for 2020.