Professor Tracy Merlin

Professor Tracy Merlin
 Position Head of School of Public Health
 Org Unit Public Health
 Telephone +61 8 8313 3575
 Location Floor/Room 4 ,  Rundle Mall Plaza ,   North Terrace
  • Biography/ Background

    Current roles:

    Head, School of Public Health;

    Deputy Executive Dean, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences;

    Director, Adelaide Health Technology Assessment (AHTA,, School of Public Health



    Research interests:

    Professor Tracy Merlin co-founded Adelaide Health Technology Assessment (AHTA) in 2001. This research centre of approximately 30 staff has undertaken over $70 million in applied/contract research since its inception, primarily for the Australian Government Department of Health and Aged Care, to evaluate health services, medicines and other interventions to inform health policy and public funding decisions.This includes assessing the safety, effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of medical services that are being considered for Medicare funding; and appraisal of pharmaceuticals to determine whether they warrant funding under the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme.


    As a consequence, Tracy leads a large and experienced team of health technology assessment (HTA) analysts, clinical epidemiologists, researchers, and health economists undertaking multi-million dollar applied research and evaluation activities on behalf of government and non-government agencies.

    Tracy's academic activities have included developing approaches, that were implemented at the national level, for horizon scanning for new health interventions and disinvesting from established medical services. She developed internationally-accepted classifications for health technology assessment products, as well as an evidence hierarchy and evidence grading method used to produce NHMRC-endorsed evidence-based clinical practice guidelines. She pioneered the first methodological approach internationally for evaluating personalised medicines, particularly pharmacogenetic treatments, for a public funding decision. She was commissioned to provide expert advice and evidence on HTA to the Government Reference Committee for the Australian HTA Policy and Methods Review.

    Apart from the methodological work, Tracy has written well over 200 systematic literature reviews, clinical practice guidelines and health technology assessment reports and has published widely in the academic peer reviewed literature.


    Tracy was on the Board of the International Network of Agencies for Health Technology Assessment (INAHTA) for 8 years amd the Chair for 3 years. She Chaired the English Editorial Board of the international HTA Glossary for 10 years and is currently co-Chair of the International Steering Committee. She is a member of the International Advisory Panel for the Agency for Care Effectiveness in Singapore's Ministry of Health. She has served several times as a member of the International Scientific Programs Committee of Health Technology Assessment international (HTAi) and has led or served on various HTAi  and INAHTA committees over the years. She also served for 10 years as a member of the South Australian Medicines Evaluation Panel and is a former longstanding member of the SA Health Policy Advisory Committee and the Clinical Ethics Committee of the Central Adelaide Local Health Network.

    She consults on the conduct of health technology assessments, systematic literature reviews and the development of evidence-based clinical practice guidelines.



    Tracy coordinates online courses on Health Technology Assessment which form part of two Masters programs. She also teaches into the Doctor of Medicine program. She supervises PhD students on a range of topics related to health technology assessment.




    Tracy has a PhD in Medicine, a Masters Degree in Public Health (specialising in clinical epidemiology and biostatistics), an Honours degree in Psychology and postgraduate qualifications in project management and online higher education. Her doctoral studies concerned the methods for evaluating diagnostic tests and personalised medicines to inform public funding decisions.

  • Qualifications

    Grad Cert Online Learning (Higher Ed)

    Adv Dipl Project Management

    Master of Public Health, University of Adelaide (epidemiology/biostatistics stream)

    Bachelor of Arts with Honours (Psychology), University of Adelaide

    PhD in Medicine, University of Adelaide

  • Research Interests

    Evidence-based health care

    Evidence-based health policy

    Health technology assessment (HTA), systematic reviews and meta-analysis

    Diagnostic tests

    Personalised medicine

    Developing evidence-based clinical practice guidelines

    Disinvestment methodology and processes

  • Media Expertise

    CategoriesMedicine & Medical Research
    ExpertiseEvidence-based health care; Evidence-based health policy; Health technology assessment (HTA); systematic literature reviews; meta-analysis; Diagnostic tests;
    Personalised medicine; Developing evidence-based clinical practice guidelines; Disinvestment methodology and processes
    NotesCo-founded Adelaide Health Technology Assessment (AHTA) in 2001. Member, Scientific & Professional Programs Committee, Health Technology Assessment international (HTAi). Co-Chair, Quality Assurance Working Group, International Network of Agencies for HTA (INAHTA). Member, South Australian Medicines Evaluation Panel (SAMEP). Member, South Australian Health Technology Advisory Group (SA-HTAG).

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Entry last updated: Saturday, 9 Mar 2024

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