Selection of themes for the Council’s recommendations

Recognising themes that require definition and preparing definitions for decision-making in the Council are the key tasks of the Council’s divisions. In addition to the divisions, individual Council members and deputy members may also propose themes for the Council. Themes may also be proposed by other stakeholders.

After receiving a proposal for a theme, the Council decides whether or not it should be taken further. In other words, the Council does not automatically begin preparing recommendations on all themes proposed to it.

When selecting themes, the Council pays attention to the following aspects:

  • Variation in clinical practices
  • Incidence of the health issue
  • Seriousness of the health issue
  • Adverse effects of the health technology
  • Financial impacts
  • Ethical questions (need for discussion on values, particularly vulnerable patient groups, equality issues, a strong marketing drive of a technology)

In the assessment of the importance of proposed topics, points are awarded for the six aforementioned aspects on a scale of one to four

Criterion

Points

Variation in clinical practices

  • 4 p: great variation
  • 3 p: moderate variation
  • 2 p: some variation
  • 1 p: no variation

Incidence of the health issue

  • 4 p: very common
  • 3 p: common
  • 2 p: not very common
  • 1 p: rare

Seriousness of the health issue

  • 4 p: very serious
  • 3 p: moderately serious
  • 2 p: not very serious
  • 1 p: negligible

Adverse effects of the health technology

  • 4 p: major
  • 3 p: moderate
  • 2 p: few
  • 1 p: very few

Financial impacts

  • 4 p: great
  • 3 p: moderate
  • 2 p: minor
  • 1 p: negligible

Ethical questions

(need for discussion on values, particularly vulnerable patient groups, equality issues, a strong marketing drive of a technology)

  • 4 p: highly significant
  • 3 p: significant
  • 2 p: of low significance
  • 1 p: no ethical problems

The higher the total points scored by a proposed theme in the assessment, the more likely it will be processed by the Council.