Qualitative evidence, knowledge translation, and policy-making, with reference to health technology assessment
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Although efforts to draw qualitative evidence into health-related policy-making and health technology assessment (HTA) processes have increased in recent years, the range of sources consulted are still limited and the theoretical foundations for consulting them are underdeveloped. This essay builds on such recent scholarship, first, by opening conventional models of knowledge translation up to the possibilities of qualitative evidence, and second, by demonstrating the utility of this wider range of qualitative evidence, signally that of humanities scholarship, in health-related policy-making. The second of these will consist of two themes – pain and narrativity – that will illustrate both the particular complexity of policy-making in HTA, whereby social, ethical, and moral variables are at play, and the mitigating affect humanities scholarship, at its best, might have on this fraught process.