[Requirements for and expectations of health technology assessment in Galicia (Spain). A qualitative study from the perspective of decision-makers and clinicians]

Gac Sanit. Nov-Dec 2011;25(6):454-60. doi: 10.1016/j.gaceta.2011.05.014. Epub 2011 Aug 5.
[Article in Spanish]


Objective: To explore perceptions of the use of health technology assessment (HTA) in the Galician public health system, identify opinions on the usefulness of the products and services developed by the Galician Health Technology Assessment Agency (avalia-t), and determine the barriers and facilitators to the transfer of results to clinical practice.

Method: We performed a qualitative study based on in-depth semi-structured interviews of 20 intentionally selected experts (10 health care professionals and 10 hospital decision makers). The interviews were tape recorded and transcribed for inductive thematic analysis.

Results: Interest in HTA activities was high, but most informants considered these activities to be underused as a tool to aid decision making in clinical practice. A series of key factors was identified to guarantee HTA use: greater dissemination of HTA activities and availability of the results, increased involvement and communication among health care professionals in the selection and prioritization of relevant research, contextualization and adaptation of results to the local context, increased organizational support and greater financial resources.

Conclusions: The present study allows end-userś opinions on the utility of the various products/services offered by HTA agencies to be contrasted in order to adapt HTA activity to their needs and requirements. The involvement of health care professionals in all HTA fields is perceived as one of the main lines of action for HTA agencies. Such involvement could be achieved by reinforcing personal contact and increasing feedback to collaborators.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Attitude of Health Personnel*
  • Decision Making
  • Expert Testimony
  • Female
  • Government Agencies / organization & administration*
  • Hospital Administrators / psychology*
  • Humans
  • Interviews as Topic
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Physicians / psychology*
  • Program Evaluation
  • Qualitative Research
  • Spain
  • Technology Assessment, Biomedical / organization & administration*
  • Technology Assessment, Biomedical / standards
  • Technology Assessment, Biomedical / statistics & numerical data