The use of Cochrane reviews in Health Technology Assessment in Japan
Background: In 2019, the Health Technology Assessment (HTA) system was officially launched in Japan. One of the main tasks of HTA is to systematically review the evidence on safety and efficacy of medicines and medical devices. The findings in a systematic review are used to evaluate the additional benefits compared to a comparator and establish parameters for efficacy and safety in cost-effectiveness analysis models. The results of additional benefits and cost-effectiveness analysis are used for list-price adjustment of medicine and medical devices. Thus, a systematic review is crucial to the process of HTA and has a significant impact on medical economics in Japan. Cochrane reviews are a potentially important source of information used in HTA, but their use has not been investigated in Japan.
Objectives: To investigate the use of Cochrane reviews in cost-effectiveness evaluations conducted as HTA in Japan, with a focus on publication dates of relevant Cochrane reviews.
Methods: We will search official evaluation reports from April 2019 for medicines and medical devices designated by the Japanese government for cost-effectiveness evaluations. We will summarize the number of reports that cited Cochrane reviews and the relevant sections within those reports and show the publication date of relevant Cochrane reviews. We will survey Japanese HTA workers on their use of Cochrane reviews and any associated issues.
Results: The number of evaluation items will be 29, including 27 medicines and 2 medical devices. At this point, there were no published reports that cited relevant Cochrane reviews out of 10 published reports. Out of 29 designated items, eight relevant Cochrane reviews were published before an academic group started their review, which represents 27.59% of the total.
Conclusions: The initial findings showed that there were no Japanese HTA reports that cited relevant Cochrane reviews, and a limited number of relevant Cochrane reviews were published prior to reviews by academic groups. We will present further data, including the results of the survey, and discuss the potential implications for maximizing the use of Cochrane reviews in the evaluation process of the Japanese HTA system.
Patient, public and/or healthcare consumer involvement: