During the 9th Meeting of the Health Technology Assessment Network of the Americas (RedETSA), held in Panama City, on November 14, 2017, the Regional Database for the Assessment of Health Technologies Reports of the Americas (BRISA) website was launched .
The technology platform and methodology to record, organize and disseminate reports was developed by BIREME, together with the Technical Unit of Medication and Health Technologies (MT), of the Department of Health Systems and Services (HSS) of PAHO/WHO, which is the Secretariat of RedETSA.
BRISA has more than 600 Health Technology Assessment reports, in an initial phase, prepared by the Ministries of Health and other organizations in charge of these evaluations in Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Peru and Uruguay, besides other countries that will join the initiative in the next phases. The reports are available online, at the BRISA website, which allows their retrieval by searching by title, abstract, keywords, etc. All reports are classified by terms from the DeCS thesaurus – Health Sciences Descriptors, organized by BIREME, thus increasing retrieval of these contents in Portuguese, Spanish, English, and French.
According to Alexandre Lemgruber, MT/HSS Regional Advisor for PAHO/WHO, “the receptivity of the country representatives was excellent. They were very happy and enthusiastic about the initiative and said they would facilitate the exchange of information. PAHO represents a great achievement”.
Another feature of BRISA is that users can access DST reports using filters by main topic, publishing institution, country of publication, language and year of publication. They also have the possibility to retrieve related content available in the Virtual Health Library databases, such as Medline and LILACS. Another feature of BRISA is that users can access ETS reports using filters by main subject, institution, country, language and year of publication. They also have the possibility to retrieve related contents available in the Virtual Health Library databases, such as Medline and LILACS.
For Francisco Caccavo, MT/HSS consultant for PAHO/WHO, “the country representatives expressed their satisfaction at having a single source to retrieve documents that would otherwise be scattered or unavailable.” They also expressed their firm commitment to growth of BRISA and the intention to expand the scope and number of documents in the database. All this is possible because BRISA promotes the systematization of information management of these contents, facilitating their retrieval and access, with the objective of increasing the visibility and use of reports. BRISA is still up to date, taking into account the coordination of the MT/HSS Unit with the institutions that are part of RedETSA”.
Another facility of BRISA is that users can access health technology assessment reports using filters by main subject, organization, country, language, and year of publication. It is also possible to retrieve related contents available at the databases of the Virtual Health Library, such as Medline and LILACS.
All of this is possible because BRISA promotes the systematization of information management of these contents, thus facilitating their retrieval and access, with the goal of enhancing visibility and use of reports.
BRISA continues to be updated with the support of one of the units of the area of Health Services of PAHO/WHO (MT/HSS) and the institutions that are part of RedETSA.