Health Economics Alongside Trials Special Interest Group (HEAT SIG)

The Health Economics Alongside Trials Special Interest Group (HEAT SIG) has been established to improve methods for economic evaluation using evidence from randomised trials.

The HEAT SIG is Co-Chaired by Prof Rachael Morton, Director of Health Economics and Health Technology Assessment at the NHMRC Clinical Trials Centre, Faculty of Medicine and Health, University of Sydney, and A/Prof Richard Norman, Health Economist at Curtin University.


The group seeks to facilitate better collaboration between trialists and health economists, ensure growth of workforce capacity in health economics, and to improve clinical trial design and translation through enhanced health economics input into their planning and design.

Our purpose

The Group provides a forum for health economists to share knowledge and expertise, identify issues, exchange information and engage in collaborative problem solving.

The Group’s functions are to:

  • Establish and disseminate best practice and novel methods for economic evaluation alongside clinical trials and economic models using trial data.
  • Connect stakeholders with health economists who possess specific experience in applied or methodological areas for the purpose of collaboration.
  • Identify best practice models of collaboration taking into account roles and responsibility, budgets and publication and dissemination practices.
  • Highlight how economic evidence can impact practice change and policy decisions.
  • Support decision making for trials prioritisation using VOI analysis and similar approaches (headroom analysis)
  • Contribute to the community of practice, capacity building and training space of economic evaluation alongside trials.
  • Provide advocacy around research infrastructure support of particular importance to Health Economists, such as expedited access to administrative data.

Our activities

The activities of the HEAT SIG focus on targeted integration of health economic analyses in late phase trials and improved awareness of methods used to conduct health economic analyses of trials. This is being achieved through:

  1. The Find a Health Economist (FAHE) Directory
    This public directory aims to connect trialists and health economists with other health economists for purposes of collaboration. Because health economic input is vital to all aspects of trial design, the FAHE directory acts as a platform for engagement and interaction within the sector.
  1. Presentations on methodological topics of economic evaluation alongside trials.
    The HEAT SIG acts as a forum for high level discussion. To continue to work towards building capacity in health economics, the Group holds regular presentations and webinars on various methodological topics, including consideration of both national and international speakers. Previous presentations are available below or via our Resource Library

Group Leadership

  • Prof Rachael Morton
  • A/Prof Richard Norman