Defining the clinician's role in early health technology assessment during medical device innovation - A systematic review

Vinayak Smith, Ritesh Warty, Amrish Nair, Sathya Krishnan, Joel Arun Sursas, Fabricio Da Silva Costa, Beverley Vollenhoven, Euan Morrison Wallace

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleResearchpeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Early Health Technology Assessment (EHTA) is an evolving field in health policy which aims to provide decision support and mitigate risk during early medical device innovation. The clinician is a key stakeholder in this process and their role has traditionally been confined to assessing device efficacy and safety alone. There is however, no data exploring their role in this process and how they can contribute towards it. This motivated us to carry out a systematic review to delineate the role of the clinician in EHTA as per the PRISMA guidelines. Methods: A systematic search of peer reviewed literature was undertaken across PUBMED, OVID Medline and Web of science up till June 2018. Studies that were suitable for inclusion focused on clinician input in health technology assessment or early medical device innovation. A qualitative approach was utilised to generate themes on how clinicians could contribute in general and specific areas of EHTA. Data was manually extracted by the authors and themes were agreed in consensus using a grounded theory framework. The specific stages included: All stages of EHTA, Basic research on mechanisms, Targeting for specific product, Proof of principle and Prototype and product development. Bias was assessed utilising the NICE Qualitative checklist. Results: A total of 33 articles met the inclusion criteria for the review. Areas identified in which the clinicians could contribute to EHTA included: i) needs driven problem solving, ii) conformity assessment of MDs, iii) economic evaluation of MDs and iv) addressing the conflicts in interest. For clinicians' input across the various specific areas of EHTA, an innovation framework was generated based on the subthemes extracted. Conclusions: The following review has identified the various segments in which clinicians can contribute to EHTA to inform stakeholders and has also proposed an innovation framework.

Original languageEnglish
Article number514
Number of pages14
JournalBMC Health Services Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 23 Jul 2019


  • Clinical strategy
  • Clinician
  • Efficacy
  • Framework
  • Health technology assessment
  • Innovation
  • Medical device
  • Needs analysis
  • Safety

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