Objectives: EUnetHTA WP 7 (Strand B) aimed to promote sharing information on new and emerging technologies. The task was to develop a prototype of a newsletter and pilot the processes of production.
Methods: The EuroScan database served as information source on pertinent technologies. To prioritize, a set of criteria for scoring the potential impact and for selecting the technologies for articles was applied and a pilot newsletter was produced.
Results: Being objective and transparent about the content of a newsletter required a method for prioritizing health technologies. Using significance criteria, members of the prioritization panel selected twelve technologies for articles of different length and depth. Potential recipients, surveyed on relevance, content, timeliness, and readability responded mostly positive, but requested more information on cost effectiveness and criticized timeliness.
Conclusions: Dissemination of an EU-wide newsletter would be feasible, but time-consuming. Although a newsletter appears to fulfill a need for information on emerging and new health technologies, it is not considered the right tool to avoid duplication of effort in the present international constellation of horizon scanning for new health technologies. Other options will be pursued as part of future collaborative actions, for example, a core set of early awareness information, or an on-demand electronic information system.
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