MTaPS Co-Hosts HTA Capacity-Building Workshop in Indonesia
Various countries across the globe have increasingly adopted health technology assessment (HTA) for evidence-based resource allocation toward sustainable universal health coverage (UHC)—HTA uses explicit methods to determine the value of a health technology at different points in its lifecycle to inform decision-making, to promote an efficient, equitable, and high-quality health system. The USAID MTaPS Program, World Bank, Center for Global Development (CGD), and iDSI co-hosted a webinar on June 14, 2022, to help Indonesia advance HTA and bolster countries’ capacity to apply HTA methods in their settings.
In Indonesia, as is the case with most low-and middle-income countries (LMICs), achieving financially sustainable and evidence-based UHC remains a significant challenge. In light of this, the webinar aimed to discuss and reiterate the baseline understanding of systematic priority setting and HTA, foster in-country expertise and Asia’s regional network for HTA capacity building, exchange experts’ experiences in using real-world evidence (RWE) for HTA, and provide resources and tools for implementation.
The high-visibility event was attended by about 50 of Indonesia’s top decision-makers from the Ministry of Health (MOH), HTA Committee, HTA agents, and others. The workshop is a collaborative effort between MTaPS and CGD in conducting capacity-building activities to provide Indonesia with the opportunity to learn from international best practices and local and regional examples and build skills related to advanced methods and application of HTA. Following the sessions, participants will use the knowledge to assess the country’s status, opportunities, and challenges for RWE and HTA as relevant.
In his welcome remarks, Professor Budi Wiweko, Lead of Indonesia HTA Committee, expressed gratitude on behalf of the Indonesian HTA Committee for the opportunity to enhance their HTA capacity.
“We know that during assessment, not only systematic review but we, also, need real-world data and RWE in order to enhance our data and evidence in the assessment before we do the clinical efficacy, the clinical evaluation, and also economical evaluations. We found many barriers in an HTA study in Indonesia including how to find the real sources of the real-world data in our country. Since many different problems face each country, such as Indonesia, we still have a lot of problems in the clinical registry that should be established by MOH but also established by professional organizations. So that’s why this [webinar] will be very beneficial and useful for us.”
In her remarks, USAID Foreign Service Officer Pamela Foster reiterated the importance of institutionalizing transparent and evidence-based decision-making for more efficient, effective, and sustainable resource allocation and commended Indonesia’s commitment to achieving UHC.
“There is an urgent need for HTA advancement and institutionalization to continue the work to build resilient health systems that are future pandemic-proof. In this current pandemic context and beyond, strengthening systematic priority setting processes using available resources becomes a really critical and paramount investment of time and energy. Building HTA capacity in Indonesia will enable the government to take policy actions based on data and evidence that can lead to the best value and equitable health care for all populations. Certainly, USAID is excited to work with and support the MOH to strengthen Indonesia’s ability in this area,” said Foster, calling on attendees to together build upon COVID-19 pandemic lessons to advance HTA and UHC.
The multisector panel representing government and non-governmental stakeholders from Indonesia, Thailand, and the UK discussed the role of real-world data and evidence to strengthen HTA, its applicability in Indonesia, National Institute for Health and Care Excellence’s RWE framework, and examples of real-world analyses from Thailand.
“Sometimes HTA is conducted to support immediate needs on a policy question. We do not always have the luxury of time for randomized clinical trials,” pointed out Chris Suharlim, MTaPS’ HTA lead and Senior Technical Advisor in Pharmaceutical Economics and HTA at Management Sciences for Health (MSH), to underscore the value of RWE for HTA.
In 2020, to support LMICs in their UHC journey, MTaPS and MSH co-developed a policy and guidance document, A Roadmap for Systematic Priority Setting and Health Technology Assessment (HTA): A Practical Guide for Policy Action in Low- and Middle-Income Countries, also known as the HTA Roadmap, drawing on an extensive literature review and contributions from several global and regional collaborators. In October 2021, during the HTAsiaLink conference in Indonesia, MTaPS organized a pre-conference session on best practices and barriers to HTA application in Asia.
MTaPS will continue to provide platforms for countries to learn from international best practices and regional examples, enabling the countries to build skills related to advanced methods and application of HTA, as they pursue sustainable UHC.