The Spanish Network of Agencies for Health Technology Assessment (REDETS) is a group of eight agencies, units and services, depending on National and Regional Governments that coordinate their work within a common methodological framework, guided by the principles of mutual recognition and cooperation. In this work, guided by the necessity of implementing a Quality Management System, we present the process to achieve this objective.
As an initial step, a review was carried out based on a structured search strategy in the main electronic databases Medline and EMBASE, and a manual search in websites of national and international agencies (March 2016) in order to collate previous knowledge and experiences. Through the information included in this review, a proposal to create a quality, self-evaluating tool is necessary.
In total, 800 references were found and finally 6 studies were included in the review (1-3). All had a similar structure. Some lists of good practices, classified in dimensions related to different quality aspects in Health Technology Assessment (HTA) organizations, were found. Also some information about questions for evaluating quality standards was indicated. Taking all this information, a proposal of sixty-six standard titles was put forward. These standards were then grouped into twelve quality criteria structured in four dimensions: I Responsibility, II Clients and Stakeholders, III Production Process and IV Resources.
Based on the systematic review, we developed a proposal for a self-evaluating tool and this is the baseline for a common Quality Management System for the Spanish Network of HTA Agencies. The quality management process will require the development of a handbook by each member of REDETS that will be based on agreed quality standards.