The Future of Health Technology Assessment (HTA) in Greece: Trends and Predictions

By Danélia Botes

October 22, 2023

The Greek healthcare system is a unique blend of both public and private sectors. The National Organisation for the Provision of Health Services (EOPYY), established in 2011, is the sole purchaser of healthcare services for patients covered by the publicly financed National Health System (ESY). The Ministry of Health (MoH) is responsible for planning and regulating the ESY, and setting up regional health authorities (YPEs) that carry out extensive healthcare planning, organisation, and provision.

The introduction of the HTA framework in Greece in 2018 was a significant step forward towards evidence-based resource allocation decisions. It has improved patient access to innovative therapies at affordable prices and in a timely manner. Since its establishment, a significant improvement in the performance of the HTA process has been observed. The backlog of medicinal products has decreased, as well as the time of HTA clinical assessment.

However, the current HTA process in Greece does not include medical devices. This creates significant uncertainty for the providers of medical devices and pharmaceutical companies. A Committee for the Negotiation of Medical Devices’ Fees and Prices does exist, but it is not involved in the assessment of new technologies. It only negotiates the prices of technologies that either already exist in the market or are imported through ad hoc decisions.

There is strong consensus that the creation of a national decisive and legally binding HTA organisation, which will be independent of the MoH, both administratively and financially, might be more credible and effective. Another next step would be the inclusion of assessment and negotiation procedures for medical devices under an HTA organisation. This would help streamline the process and increase efficiency in the healthcare system.

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