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The University of Southampton
Southampton Health Technology Assessments Centre

History of SHTAC

SHTAC was formed in January 2000 from the research group in the Wessex Institute for Health Research and Development (WIHRD) that had supported the South and West and South East (formerly Wessex) Regional Development and Evaluation Committee (1991-2000).  Originally headed by Professor Norman Waugh (2000-2002), Professor Andrew Clegg (2002-2014), and then Interim Director Dr Andrew Cook (2014-2015), SHTAC is currently led by Professor Joanne Lord (2015 onwards).

SHTAC has operated as one of the centres of excellence contracted by the Department of Health since 2001, following its successful tender for a 5 year contract to support the Technology Assessment Reviews (TAR) programme. This programme was initiated to provide rigorous high quality independent research evidence to support decision making by national policy bodies.

SHTAC's research has supported the work of organisations such as the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), (previously National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE)), the Department of Health Policy Research Programme, the National Clinical Directors, and the NIHR Health Technology Assessment Programme. The importance of SHTAC's research in supporting national decision making and guidance to the NHS has been recognised through continuation of its role as a national centre of excellence from 2001 to 2021.

SHTAC is a founder member of InterTASC, a group of nine independent academic teams in the UK which supports the TAR programme.  InterTASC meets regularly to discuss the process of assessment and appraisal of health technologies and development of the methodology associated with evidence synthesis.  The other academic groups include:

Since its formation SHTAC has continued to grow and develop its expertise and research programme. 

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