Developing the evidence report


A key phase in the assessment process is development of the evidence report, also called a health technology assessment. When key questions are final, contracted researchers begin to gather scientific research to determine the answers. A report identifies and rates the evidence based on its strength, quality, and relevance to the key questions. The report does not make recommendations about reimbursement or use of the technology.

An evidence report includes:

  • A systematic search for evidence (usually clinical trials).
  • Generating a summary of the studies' characteristics, methodological quality, and results.
  • Assessing studies for quality.
  • Combining data from several studies.
  • Considerations regarding:
    • Safety;
    • Health outcomes; and
    • Cost - including cost data submitted by state agencies affected by the committee decision.


  1. HTA contracts with technology assessment centers (TAC) to conduct the reviews.
  2. HTA forwards public comments about evidence that individuals believe should be considered in the review, as well as, data and information received from state agencies.
  3. When the TAC completes a draft evidence report, it is published to the HTA website and stakeholders are notified of the availability of a draft for comment.
  4. The TAC may also request peer review from clinical and methods experts.
  5. Comments about the report are collected by HTA, reviewed and responded to by the TAC, and a final evidence report is completed and published prior to HTCC public meetings.

Get involved

Draft evidence reports are posted online to gather input. HTA seeks input on the appropriateness and completeness of the technology assessment, especially regarding the scientific evidence about the key questions. Input about issues related to the review of the scientific evidence is most helpful, including:

  • Identification of evidence not reviewed, but available from peer-reviewed publications.
  • Issues with interpretations of the evidence cited in the technology review.
  • Important health outcomes.
  • Study design issues that limit the applicability or availability of evidence.
  • Possibility of developing better evidence, including any pending studies.
  • Context information related to the balance of potential or actual benefits, harms, and costs.
Information on public comments

Organizations may wish to impart their groups' positions and beneficiaries may wish to share their perspectives. Researchers, physicians, product manufacturers, professional societies and other members of the health care community have important insights that can assist us in the health technology assessment process.

Public comments that provide information, preferably published clinical evidence, relating to a health technology’s safety, efficacy, effectiveness, or cost‐effectiveness are most helpful. Often, the health care community may have evidence relating to actual practice that is informative. Public comments that give information on unpublished evidence such as the results of individual practitioners or patients are less rigorous and therefore less useful for making evidence based coverage determinations. Public comments that are part of letter writing campaigns by groups or individuals who espouse a single point of view through identical or nearly identically worded emails or documents are not useful in this evidence based process.

HTA does not need, and is not requesting, individually identifiable/personal health information to inform its technology review. HTA is requesting information about a technology’s safety, efficacy, effectiveness, or cost‐effectiveness only for the purpose of its technology review and coverage decision processes. The HTA often reviews new technologies, or technologies being used in new ways, and recognizes that there may be regulatory or other restrictions on some organization’s ability to provide information. HTA assures organizations that the information it is requesting is not considered by HTA to be a request for promotion of a product, and will not be used by HTA for promoting products or use of products, or for communicating or instructing patients or health care providers about the appropriateness of technologies in any individual situation.

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact the HTA program.