A Meta-Model Approach to the Construction of Decision Support Systems in Health Economies

Silvana Quaglini, Luisella Dazzi, Mario Stefanelli, and Clara Fassino

The system described in this paper provides different types of health care professionals with a set of tools for building, using and sharing decision support systems for resource allocation. The system addresses selected areas, namely the choice of diagnostic tests, the therapy planning and the instrumentation purchase. Decision support is based on decision-analytic models, incorporating an explicit knowledge representation of both the medical domain knowledge and the economic evaluation theory. Application models are built on top of meta-models (there is a meta-model for each addressed area), that are used as guidelines for making explicit both the cost and effectiveness components, as well as the responsibility of different decision makers for different decision variables. The proposed approach improves the transparency and rigour of the collaborative decision-making process. In addition, reusing the results of a particular economic evaluation in different settings is facilitated by a standard representation of both the underlying hypotheses and the results themselves. The system is designed as a service accessible through the internet.


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