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Common Acronyms for All Who Are New to CADTH

November 2020

To make it faster and easier for interested individuals to understand CADTH recommendations, reports, and CADTH Symposium presentations, we’d like to equip you with the meanings of these common acronyms. Welcome to the language of health technology assessment (HTA) and the CADTH lexicon.

Acronym What It Stands For Details
AE adverse event An unwanted and usually harmful occurrence following treatment.
BIA budget impact analysis Used to estimate the impact of adding a drug, device, or procedure to a public formulary or budget, based on cost and the number of people likely to receive treatment within a specific period of time.
BSC best supportive care This is when the aim is to relieve symptoms and improve quality of life rather than cure the disease.
CADTH Canadian Agency for Drugs and Technologies in Health An independent, not-for-profit organization responsible for providing Canada’s health care decision-makers with objective evidence to help make informed decisions about the optimal use of drugs and medical devices in our health care system.
CAPCA Canadian Association of Provincial Cancer Agencies An association of provincial and territorial cancer agencies involved in delivering cancer care in Canada.
CDEC CADTH Canadian Drug Expert Committee A CADTH expert committee that makes drug reimbursement recommendations.
CDR CADTH Common Drug Review Reviews drugs and makes reimbursement recommendations to Canada's public drug plans. In April 2021, a harmonized submission procedure took effect for CADTH’s 3 reimbursement review pathways — the CADTH Common Drug Review, the CADTH pan- Canadian Oncology Drug Review, and the Interim Plasma Protein Product Review.
CEA cost-effectiveness analysis This type of analysis is used in economic evaluations to compare treatments that differ in the magnitude of their outcomes; outcomes are expressed in natural terms such as life-years gained or adverse events avoided.
CI confidence interval The CI is a range around a result within which we would expect (with 90%, 95%, or 99% confidence) the true value to lie; the true value, however, may still lie outside this range.
CMA cost-minimization analysis Used in economic evaluations, the CMA compares treatments that have similar clinical outcomes.
COI conflict of interest This refers to when judgment about one activity may be influenced, or be seen to be influenced, by competing interests or activities.
A COI may be intellectual, financial, or personal.
CPEC CADTH Canadian Plasma Protein Product Expert Committee CPEC is a subcommittee of CDEC that makes recommendations for plasma protein products.
CPG clinical practice guideline This is an evidence-based statement and recommendation that helps health care professionals and patients make decisions about appropriate health care for specific clinical circumstances.
CUA cost-utility analysis Such analysis is used in economic evaluations to compare treatments when the outcomes are different. Outcomes are expressed in quality-adjusted life-years to allow comparison between health technologies.
DAC CADTH Device Advisory Committee This committee provides input to CADTH on ways to improve the management of medical devices.
DIN Drug Identification Number This number is assigned by Health Canada to any prescription or over-the-counter drug that is allowed to be sold in Canada.
EQ-5D EuroQol 5-Dimensions questionnaire This measures health-related quality of life determined by an individual’s level of functioning on 5 aspects of health: mobility, self- care, usual activities, pain/discomfort, and anxiety/depression.
FPT federal/provincial/territorial CADTH receives funding from Canada’s federal, provincial, and territorial governments, with the exception of Quebec.
FWG Formulary Working Group This working group of the CADTH Pharmaceutical Advisory Committee gives advice to CADTH on pharmaceutical issues.
HC Health Canada This federal government department is responsible for helping the people of Canada maintain and improve their health.
HRQoL health-related quality of life These are aspects of quality of life that are affected by illness and its treatment, including physical, psychological, and social functioning.
HTA health technology assessment This systematically evaluates the direct and intended effects of a health technology, as well as its indirect and unintended consequences. An HTA is generally undertaken to help others make a decision on a technology’s use or purchase.
HTERP CADTH Health Technology Expert Review Panel The panel develops guidance on medical devices and diagnostic tests for Canadian health care decision-makers.
HTM health technology management This refers to the management of drug and non-drug health technologies, from pre-market development to adoption and use, to obsolescence.
ICER incremental cost-effectiveness ratio This is the result of a cost-effective analysis; the ratio is of the difference between the costs (in dollars) of 2 treatments and the difference in the outcomes.
ICUR incremental cost-utility ratio The ICUR is similar to the ICER, although costs are measured in dollars and benefits are measured in quality-adjusted life-years.
INESSS Institut national d’excellence en santé et en services sociaux INESSS provides Quebec’s health care decision-makers with objective evidence on the adoption, use, and public-plan coverage of technologies, medications, and interventions; and develops guides to clinical practice for their optimal use.
ISKM CADTH Implementation Support and Knowledge Mobilization team The team provides support in the understanding of decision-makers’ evidence needs and provides tools and advice to turn evidence into action.
LTC long-term care This type of care is meant for individuals with long-term functional or cognitive disabilities who need access to 24-hour nursing care and assistance with activities of daily living.
LY life-years This is an estimate of the years of life the average person lives as a result of a health technology.
MCID minimal clinically important difference This is used to describe the smallest change in a treatment outcome that patients would identify as important and which might lead to a change in treatment.
NOC Notice of Compliance The NOC authorization is given by Health Canada when regulatory requirements are met, allowing a pharmaceutical company to market a drug in Canada.
NOC/c Notice of Compliance with Conditions Authorization given by Health Canada when the pharmaceutical company agrees to do more research to show that its drug helps patients.
NON Notice of Non-Compliance This notice is given by Health Canada to the pharmaceutical company after an application has been reviewed because it does not meet the conditions of the Food and Drugs Act and its Food and Drug Regulations.
OS overall survival OS is the length of time from either the date of diagnosis or the start of treatment that patients diagnosed with the disease are still alive. It is often used as a measure in clinical trials for oncology drugs to find out how well a treatment works.
PAG pCODR Provincial Advisory Group Representatives from public drug plans and provincial cancer agencies provide operational advice for oncology drug reimbursement reviews to ensure that the process and recommendations meet the evidence needs of decision-makers to guide funding decisions.
pCODR CADTH pan-Canadian Oncology Drug Review Reviews cancer drugs and makes reimbursement recommendations to Canada's public drug plans and provincial cancer agencies. In April 2021, a harmonized submission procedure took effect for CADTH’s 3 reimbursement review pathways: the CADTH Common Drug Review, the CADTH pan-Canadian Oncology Drug Review, and the Interim Plasma Protein Product Review.
pCPA pan-Canadian Pharmaceutical Alliance This entity negotiates with pharmaceutical companies to achieve greater value on drugs for publicly funded drug plans.
pERC CADTH pCODR Expert Review Committee This expert committee of CADTH makes oncology drug reimbursement recommendations.
PFS progression-free survival PFS is the length of time after treatment that a person lives with cancer without the disease worsening. It is often used as a measure in clinical trials of oncology drugs to find out how well a treatment works.
PMPRB Patented Medicine Prices Review Board The PMPRB ensures that the prices of patented medicines sold in Canada are not excessive.
PPP Interim Plasma Protein Product Review The review process involves CADTH and Canadian Blood Services making reimbursement recommendations on plasma protein products. In April 2021, a harmonized submission procedure took effect for CADTH’s 3 reimbursement review pathways — the CADTH Common Drug Review, the CADTH pan-Canadian Oncology Drug Review, and the Interim Plasma Protein Product Review.
PRO patient-reported outcome PRO is the information gathered directly from patients about how they feel or function.
QALY quality-adjusted life-year This estimates the duration and quality of survival for an individual over an assumed time period.
RCT randomized controlled trial This type of study design randomly assigns participants into different treatment groups.
RFA Request for Advice A formal process, RFA enables drug plans to seek advice about a previous CADTH recommendation.
RHA Regional Health Authority Canadian provincial governments administer and deliver public health care to residents via these authorities, which may also be known as Health Authorities or collectively as a Health Network or Local Health Integration Network (LHIN).
RR CADTH Rapid Response These CADTH reports provide health care decision-makers with up-to-date evidence tailored to meet specific needs.
SF-36 Short Form (36-item) Health Survey questionnaire The SF-36 is a Medical Outcomes Study questionnaire of overall health status that assesses functional status, well-being, and quality of life.
WDAE withdrawal due to adverse event A WDAE is any adverse event that results in the patient stopping taking the drug during a clinical trial.

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