The task force’s goal is to provide recommendations on reporting and evaluating the risk of bias of systematic reviews with cost or cost-effectiveness outcomes. The recommendations will serve for reviews with various objectives (variability in outcomes, quality of evidence or methods, or research gaps estimation) and will be applicable to summaries of economic evidence assessed either independently or within clinical reviews.


The task force report will fill a gap in guidance on assessing the reporting and risk of bias in systematic reviews with cost and cost-effectiveness outcomes and propose a checklist for reviews of varying scope.  With the increasing interest in systematic reviews of economic evaluations, and the current lack of an appropriate instrument to evaluate and judge their quality, there is a significant need for ISPOR good practices on this topic.  It is a priority for the health technology assessment (HTA) field and its respective stakeholders. 

These recommendations and checklist will be important for decision makers, researchers, and producers of health technologies.  The growing number of systematic reviews with an economic component provides coherent evidence on cost-effectiveness outcomes.  However, the diversity of methods and outcomes of these reviews make it difficult for decision makers to use this summarized information most effectively. 

Researchers can improve the reporting and quality of their study and to evaluate reporting and quality of systematic reviews conducted by other teams. Emerging systematic reviews with cost and cost-effectiveness components may guide producers of health technologies on pricing, resource allocation, and economic models, ultimately contributing to market access strategies conditional on the premise that the quality of these reviews is trustworthy.


J.L. (Hans) Severens, PhD, Professor, School of Health Policy and Management, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Rotterdam, The Netherlands

Jeremy D. Goldhaber-Fiebert, PhD, Associate Professor of Medicine, Core Faculty Member, Centers for Health Policy and Primary Care and Outcomes Research (CHP/PCOR), Stanford University, Stanford, CA, USA

Olena (Lena) Mandrik, PhD, Post-doctoral Fellow, International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), World Health Organization (WHO), Lyon, France

Leadership Group:

Ariel Bardach, MD, MSc, PhD, Researcher, Health Technology Assessment (HTA) and Health Economic Evaluations Department, Institute for Clinical Effectiveness and Health Policy (IECS), Center for Epidemiology and Public Health Research (CIESP CONICET) and the Argentinean Cochrane Collaboration Center, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Salah Ghabri, PhD, Health Economist/Project Coordinator, Haute Autorité de Santé  (HAS), Saint Denis La Plaine, France  

Candyce Hamel, PhD, Senior Clinical Research Associate, Ottawa Hospital Research Institute, Clinical Epidemiology Program, Ottawa, Canada

Cristina Masseria, PhD, Methods and Capability Lead, Patient & Health Impact (PHI), Pfizer, New York, NY, USA.

Tim Mathes, PhD, Research Associate, Institute for Research in Operative Medicine (IFOM), Witten / Herdecke University, Cologne, Germany

Luke Vale, MSc, PhD, Health Foundation Chair in Health Economics, and Deputy Director, Institute of Health & Society, Newcastle University and Chairman, Joint Economic Methods Group, Cochrane and Campbell Collaborations, Newcastle, England, UK

Torbjørn Wisløff, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Health Management and Health Economics, Institute of Health and Society (Helsam), University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway

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