Background: A framework for collaborative production and sharing of
HTA information, the HTA Core Model, was originally developed within EUnetHTA in
2006–08. In this paper, we describe the further development of the
Model to allow implementation and utilization of the Model online. The aim was
to capture a generic HTA process that would allow effective use of the HTA Core
Model and resulting HTA information while at the same time not interfering with
HTA agencies' internal processes.
Methods: The work was coordinated by a development team in Finland,
supported by an international expert group. Two pilot testing rounds were
organized among EUnetHTA agencies and two extensive core HTA projects tested the
tool in a real setting. The final work was also formally validated by a group of
Results: The HTA Core Model Online—available at http://www.corehta.info—is a web site hosting a) a tool to
allow electronic utilization of the HTA Core Model and b) a database of produced
HTA information. While access to the HTA information is free to all, the
production features are currently available to EUnetHTA member agencies only. A
policy was crafted to steer the use of the Model and produced information.
Conclusions: We have successfully enabled electronic use of the HTA
Core Model and agreed on a policy for its utilization. The system is already
being used in subsequent HTA projects within EUnetHTA Joint Action 2. Identified
shortcomings and further needs will be addressed in subsequent development.