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Medicare Benefits Schedule: Involving the public in the review process - A report of findings from the rapid literature review

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This report includes a summary of findings and an appraisal of existing models used across the world to involve the public in heath technology assessment. It is intended to inform discussions of the Medicare Benefits Schedule Review Taskforce about the ‘improvement of our Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS)’ in order to ensure that it is ‘consistent with the latest clinical practice, or the best value healthcare’1. This report focusses on ways of improving the way the public are involved in the process of reviewing MBS Items. This report also contains an Appendix which includes the search report from the literature review, a summary of the data extracted, links to the full data set extracted from the rapid review and additional information The report contains a level of detail intended to reflect the complex nature of the subject. As an aid, the report includes a one page summary of the entire report, and an executive summary of key learning points that have been extracted from the report. One page summary Section title: Exploring definitions and terms This section explores the variety of words and terms used throughout the English speaking world to describe ‘consumer engagement’ and associated concepts. Key learning point Involving the public in creating and agreeing the language used to describe engagement, participation and involvement will ensure that it is accessible, inclusive and therefore effective. Section title: Detailed appraisal of five relevant models This sections examines five internationally relevant models in detail, appraising the design and, where appropriate, key elements and limitations. Key learning point While these models represent a number of different ways of involving the public and evaluating involvement, there is no evidence-based validation for any of the models and therefore no endorsed option. Section title: Relevant generic models of involvement This section contains a summary of models of public involvement and engagement which, while relevant to health technology assessment, are more generic. Key learning point While there are a number of relevant international models, there is significant variation in the definitions of certain words used, such as engagement, and the purpose of any involvement or engagement. The Health Research Authority (UK) provides the best example of an organisation clearly articulating what they mean by public involvement, thus providing a robust linguistic framework of reference for future involvement models4. Section title: Significant themes The significant themes identified were ‘social and ethical issues’, ‘public involvement’, ‘learning, training, education and development’. Key learning point While there may be challenges to including and involving everyone in the appraisal process, or ‘tensions between equity and efficiency’5, there are ways of overcoming some of these challenges. For example, creating inclusive learning and development opportunities for the public. This report is hosted here: https://chf.org.au/sites/default/files/mbs_involving_the_public_in_the_review_process_rapid_review.pdf
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