Stefan Boes, PhD, MSc
Professor of Health Economics
Director of the Center for Health, Policy, an and Economics (CHPE)
University of Lucerne
Sarah Mantwill, PhD
Research Manager and Coordinator
Swiss Learning Health System
Dr. Boes and Dr. Mantwill will provide an overview of the SLHS and its key features, as well as its capacity-building efforts to train young researchers in the field of learning health systems, and the development of a centralized metadata repository in support of creating a sufficient large evidence basis to support learning cycles in the Swiss health system. Further, they will discuss lessons learned from the past and the newest developments of the SLHS in light of a second funding phase supported by the Swiss government.
Promoting and supporting the uptake of evidence and evidence-informed decision-making in health-systems related policy and practice is a challenge. In Switzerland, the need to address this matter has been increasingly emphasized by different actors in the health system. In particular, the lack of comprehensive coordination efforts in the field of health services research, and subsequent knowledge translation activities, has been stressed.
In response, the Swiss Learning Health System (SLHS) was established as a nationwide project in 2017, and currently involves ten academic partner institutions. One of the overarching objectives of the SLHS is to bridge research, policy, and practice by providing an infrastructure that supports learning cycles by: continuously identifying issues relevant to the Swiss health system, systemizing relevant evidence, presenting potential courses of action, and revising and reshaping responses.
Key features of learning cycles in the SLHS include the development of policy/evidence briefs that serve as a basis for stakeholder dialogues with actors from research, policy, and practice. Issues that are identified to be further pursued are monitored for potential implementation.