Module information


Critical Appraisal and Health Economics
Stage Two
Module code

Module objective

Clinical Scientists in HSST will be equipped with the skills to critically appraise the evidence for a new diagnostic test or intervention. In this module the Clinical Scientist in HSST will recognise that often there are conflicting scientific and financial imperatives for the adoption of new healthcare pathways. This module will also cover the tools used for critical appraisal of scientific literature, and also provide a grounding in health economics. This will equip the Clinical Scientist in HSST to assess critically the evidence and rationale for introducing new diagnostic services.

Knowledge and understanding

By the end of this module the Clinical Scientist in HSST will be able to critically analyse, synthesise and critically apply their knowledge with respect to the practice of gastrointestinal physiology and/or urodynamics whilst working independently within their scope of practice including:

  • key concepts in the assessment and adoption of new healthcare: efficacy; clinical and cost-effectiveness; safety; patient experience.
  • theoretical frameworks for evidence-based medicine, including meta- analysis and systematic review.
  • theoretical frameworks for health economic assessments and for measuring costs.
  • models for measuring the financial value of new healthcare pathways and assessing outcome vs. cost, including: cost-benefit; cost-utility; cost- effectiveness.
  • the role of UK professional organisations in supporting the adoption of healthcare diagnostics and interventions: Cochrane; NICE.
  • opportunity cost, and optimal use of limited resources.
  • approaches and methodologies that can be taken to assess medical technologies, including:
    • randomised control trials.
    • evaluating diagnostic technologies.
    • case studies.
    • registers and database.
    • quantitative synthesis.
    • epidemiological
  • the elements of a medical technology strategy.epidemiological sources.
  • factors influencing diffusion of healthcare technologies and medical practice concepts.

Technical and clinical skills

By the end of this module the Clinical Scientist in HSST will be able to assess a proposed diagnostic or treatment pathway for scientific and financial value and will be able to choose objectively between two or more competing demands when resources are limited.

Attitudes and behaviours

By the end of this module the Clinical Scientist in HSST will be expected to critically evaluate their own response to both normal and complex situations consistently demonstrating the professional attributes and insights required of a Consultant Clinical Scientist working within the limits of professional competence referring as appropriate to senior staff and will:

  • recognise   and   champion   the   importance of   continuous  review and development of service.
  • approach unfamiliar tasks and problems with an open and creative outlook.
  • recognise the importance of continuous service review and development of service and the role of clinical audit.
  • encourage a culture of innovation and entrepreneurialism.
  • work within governance and ethical frameworks.

Module assigned to


Specialty code Specialty title Action
Specialty code HPS3-1-20 Specialty title Gastrointestinal Physiology [V1] Action View
Specialty code HPS3-2-20 Specialty title Urological Science [V1] Action View
Specialty code HPS1-2-20 Specialty title Vascular Science [V1] Action View