Prioritisation criteria for the selection of new diagnostic technologies for evaluation
Background. Currently there is no framework for those involved in the identification, evaluation and prioritisation of new diagnostic technologies. Therefore we aimed to develop prioritisation criteria for the assessment of new diagnostic technologies, by gaining international consensus on not only which criteria should be used, but also their relative importance. Methods. A two-round Delphi process was used to generate consensus amongst an international panel of twenty-six experts on priority criteria for diagnostic health technology assessment. Participants represented a range of health care and related professions, including government, industry, health services and academia. Results. Based on the responses to the first questionnaire 18 criteria were placed into three categories: high, intermediate and moderate priority. For 16 of the 18 criteria, agreement with the categorisation of the criteria into the high, intermediate and moderate categories was high at ≥ 70% (10 had agreement ≥ 80%). A further questionnaire and panel discussion reduced the criteria to 16 and two categories; seven were classified as high priority and nine intermediate. Conclusions. This study proposes an objective structure of prioritisation criteria to use when assessing new diagnostic technologies, based on an expert consensus process. The value of these criteria is that no one single component should be used as the decisive driver for prioritisation of new diagnostic technologies for adoption in healthcare settings. Future studies should be directed at establishing the value of these prioritisation criteria across a range of healthcare settings. © 2010 Plüddemann et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.