Courses

Summer school: The Future of Health Technology

Health technologies are intended to improve the quality of healthcare delivered through earlier diagnosis, less invasive treatment options and reduction in hospital stays and rehabilitation times.  New medical technologies keep emerging, but healthcare costs are rising. Even though a new technology seems to be very promising, only a limited amount of health technologies will in the end be used in clinical practice. To make informed choices on the development of new technologies in healthcare, early health technology assessments to evaluate the potential cost-effectiveness of such new devices is necessary.

 In this course we will evaluate several newly developed technologies within the MIRA research institute for biomedical technology and technical medicine at the University of Twente. The technologies that will be assessed during this week are photoacoustic mammography (PAM) for breast cancer detection, the LOPES robot that provides walking support and a microbiology technique that helps in the early detection of cancer.

 You will learn several techniques that can be used in early health technology assessments. These techniques include: Multi Criteria Decision Analysis (MCDA), Decision Modelling (using Markov models and Decision Trees) and Budget Impact Analysis. During the summer school you will work on a value dossier for a potential new application of one of the three technologies (PAM, LOPES, early cancer detection). In the end of the week you will be able to present whether you think it is feasible to use the technology for the new potential application.

 These are problems that need to be dealt with in healthcare. So come to CuriousU and decide on the Future of Health Technology!

Testimonial: Heather from Canada

Course Topics

Health sciences and health systems

A good health system delivers quality services to all people, when and where they need them.

Health Sciences investigates how financing systems, organizational structures, administrative processes and social factors affect access to healthcare, the quality and cost of healthcare, and ultimately our health and well-being. Its foundation is in management principles and in the social sciences. Health Sciences is essential to improving health and patient-centered care. During this course you will get an overview of health sciences and health systems.

Multi-Criteria Analysis (MCA) methods

Multi-Criteria Analysis (MCA) is a decision-making tool developed for complex problems. In a situation where multiple criteria are involved confusion can arise if a logical, well-structured decision-making process is not followed.

Another difficulty in decision making is that reaching a general consensus in a multidisciplinary team can be very difficult to achieve. By using MCA the members don't have to agree on the relative importance of the criteria or the rankings of the alternatives. Each member enters his or her own judgements, and makes a distinct, identifiable contribution to a jointly reached conclusion.

Decision tree

A decision tree is a graph that uses a branching method to illustrate every possible outcome of a decision.

Decision trees can be drawn by hand or created with a graphics program or specialized software. Informally, decision trees are useful for focusing discussion when a group must make a decision. Programmatically, they can be used to assign monetary/time or other values to possible outcomes so that decisions can be automated.

Course aim

  • Learn all about the new health technologies. Who developed it, how can they be helpful and how can they be used?
  • Learn about how to evaluate these techniques concerning costs and consequences for the health care system.
  • Applying your knowledge about the technologies and evaluation techniques to assess the effects and or impacts.
  • Work in multidisciplinary teams

Course overview

  • Methods: Lectures, interactive workshops
  • Course level: BSc
  • Target group: Students in their second and third Bachelor’s year
  • Course leader: Annemieke Witteveen, Sofie Berghuis
  • Credits: 2 ECTS for successfully completing the summer school