Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación

P6. Health Services Evaluation

The purpose of evaluative research in health services is to produce valid scientific evidence as to the contribution of health services to the improvement of population health and its cost. The Programme seeks collaborative research of excellence in health service evaluation focused on the priorities of the National Health System in order to directly transfer results for making decisions regarding the health policy, management, clinical practice and patient decisions.

Strategic objectives

  • Promote new and pertinent knowledge about the health and social burden of diseases, and the quality of health services.
  • Encourage collaborative research with programme groups and other groups in CIBER, RETICS and others.
  • Transfer scientific results of the programme to the National Health System and develop strategies to improve the scientific capabilities of researchers.

Lines of Research

  • Estimation of the burden of disease
  • Measuring health status
  • Health service efficacy and effectiveness
  • Health service quality and costs
  • Determinants of inability to work
  • Study of vulnerable groups

The BiblioPRO technology platform is also comprised within this research programme.

Strategic Subprogrammes

1. Estimation of the Health and Social Burden of Chronic Diseases based on the Continuous Work History Sample (CWHS)

The Continuous Work History Sample (CWHS) contains work history-related microdata of 4% of all people paying into social security since 2004 (1.1 million people), and is updated every year. This source of information gives the Programme the opportunity to provide additional knowledge about the health and social burden of chronic diseases. The Programme also seeks out a strategy to link CWHS records (people paying into social security) with other available health data sources (e.g., the electronic clinical history) to create a permanent cohort of people paying into social security and their contacts with the National Health System.

Scientific objectives:

  • Evaluate the excess of early death in individuals receiving a pension for permanent disability (PD).
  • Evaluate the effect of work histories in the risk of premature death.
  • Evaluate the specific cause of a temporary disability (TD) and the risk of later suffering a PD.
  • Evaluate work history patterns by means of latent growth class analysis models.

2. Measuring Health Status

Perceived health is an essential indicator for monitoring health services. Programme groups are investigating a way to measure well-being, health-related quality of life, functional ability and disability and how to apply such measurements.

Scientific objectives:

  • Development and validation of instruments for measuring perceived health.
  • Usefulness in clinical practice and for managing instruments for measuring perceived health.
  • Improvement of scientific capabilities of programme researchers in the evaluation of perceived health.
  • Statistical methodological developments for item response theory models and their applications to population-based studies.

This subprogramme includes a transfer product: BiblioPRO, which is virtual quality of life instrument library. More specifically, BiblioPRO is the virtual health-related quality of life instrument library in Spanish, and seeks to become the virtual library of international scientific reference containing Patient Reported Outcome questionnaires (PRO) in Spanish. It combines research with translational activities, making it a unique resource for research and clinical practice. Through its virtual platform ( it allows the PRO questionnaire authors to disclose and assess the results of their research, and it allows users of those questionnaires to make an informed selection of said results.

The objectives of BiblioPRO are to:

  • Identify patient reported outcome (PRO) questionnaires and health-related quality of life questionnaires.
  • Compile the highest possible number of instruments in a free-access virtual library, which allows selecting the most appropriate one.
  • Facilitate legal access to these questionnaires, assessing the results of research carried out in Spanish.

3. Evaluation of the Effectiveness, Costs and Quality of Health Services

Efficiency in the primary or secondary prevention of health issues and providing quality healthcare at a reasonable cost (sustainability) should be top priorities for public and private decision makers, and ultimately for each and every member of society. However, along with the effort dedicated to said health policies, and along with the indicators that directly indicate the impact on well-being caused by health issues (death, morbidity, disability, deteriorations in the quality of life of patients and family members), it is possible to identify other indicators that help to better understand their social impact.

Scientific objectives:

  • Measuring and generating instruments for evaluating healthcare quality (benchmarking).
  • Social value of the informal care.
  • Analysis of inequality in access to health and social services.
  • Divestment in health services/healthcare technologies of little value.

Attached Groups

See spanish website for furher information about research groups participating in this program.

Attached groups (Spanish)