“We publish national guidance on technologies with the potential to significantly impact health and care service in Wales.”
History, structure and governance
Health Technology Wales (HTW) was established in 2017 to address recommendation 3 of the 2014 Inquiry into Access to Medical Technologies in Wales which recommended the establishment of an all-Wales medical technologies appraisal mechanism. HTW is funded by Welsh Government and hosted within NHS Wales but is independent of both.
HTW is a national body working to improve the quality of care in Wales through the appraisal of non-medicine health and care technologies. We collaborate with partners across the health, social care and technology sectors to ensure an all-Wales approach. Our remit covers any technology or model of care and support in health and social care that isn’t a medicine. For health, this could include medical devices, diagnostics, procedures, and psychological therapies. For social care, this could include equipment, or different models for supporting families, children, adults, and the workforce.
How HTW works
At Health Technology Wales we carry out health technology assessments involving the appraisal of non-medicine health and social care technologies and models of care and support. We research and evaluate the best available effectiveness and cost-effectiveness evidence about a health or social care technology. Based on this evidence we publish national guidance on whether the health or social care technology should be adopted for use in Wales. Our guidance is not mandatory, but there is an expectation from Welsh Government that our guidance is adopted. The status of HTW guidance is ‘adopt or justify’. Each local health board and other relevant bodies are expected to report on how they have considered our appraisal and guidance. If they have chosen not to adopt HTW guidance, they are asked to outline their rationale and justify their decision. We regularly monitor adoption of guidance on non-medicine health and social care technologies. This includes HTW guidance and guidance from other organisations, such as NICE (The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence).
Our national guidance and news is published on our website and social media channels and disseminated to a wide network of stakeholders, including: clinicians, NHS local health boards and specialist trusts, care providers, Welsh Government, technology manufacturers and the wider public.
As well as communicating with stakeholders directly and via our communication channels we publish a quarterly bulletin and a newsletter and guidance alerts for subscribers.
In 2021 Health Technology Wales published its Strategic Plan 2021-2025 which set out its immediate and medium-term strategic goals and objectives. The goals set out in the plan include expanding HTWs topic identification, prioritisation and selection efforts; prioritising the identification of topics with a significant expected impact on health and social care services; significantly increasing HTWs evidence appraisal and guidance output; targeting social and digital care innovations for appraisal; rolling out the HTW adoption audit function; ensuring continuous improvement in HTW appraisal methods and compliance with best international practice.
Population served (mil): 3.107 mil
Description of population served (level): National
Current SIA budget (mil Euro): Our annual budget is £1.6m and we utilise these funds to assess both health and social care topics which are prioritised and adopted onto our work programme, throughout the year. As social care is a relatively new area of work for us, the proportion of our budget assigned to this activity is relatively low. We are not currently in a position to ring fence our social care appraisal budget as this work is integrated with our wider health technology assessment.
Permanent staff: 25
Ongoing SIA projects: number and/or list of topics:
Strategies for Relatives (START): https://healthtechnology.wales/reports-guidance/strategies-for-relatives-start-intervention-to-improve-the-mental-health-of-carers-of-people-with-dementia/
Intensive Family Preservation Services: https://healthtechnology.wales/reports-guidance/intensive-family-preservation-services-ifps/
Video Feedback Interventions: https://healthtechnology.wales/reports-guidance/video-feedback-interventions/
Digital platform to support older people at home: https://healthtechnology.wales/reports-guidance/digital-platform-to-support-older-people-at-home/
Passive monitoring technologies to support the independence of older adults living alone: https://healthtechnology.wales/reports-guidance/passive-monitoring-technologies-to-support-the-independence-of-older-adults-living-alone/
Bed monitoring and alarm systems in care homes: https://healthtechnology.wales/reports-guidance/bed-monitoring-and-alarm-systems-in-care-homes/
Director General: Dr Susan Myles
Contact person: Dr Susan Myles
The Life Science Hub
3 Assembly Square
Cardiff, CF10 4PL