A review by Kalipso Chalkidou and colleagues published in the Milbank Quarterly compares the characteristics of health technology assessment entities in the UK, France, Germany, and Australia. The full report can be accessed online here; it summarises common themes which may inform current efforts to establish comparative effectiveness research in the US. Firstly, the authors set out the procedures which characterise functioning health technology assessment (such as independence from government, transparency, and scientific rigour). Secondly, they emphasise the evolving role of these organisations, for example in taking on new roles such as influencing national health research agenda. Finally, the review sets out the importance of “selling” the role of health technology assessment to stakeholders, and of setting up appropriate governance and oversight, particularly in relation to conflict of interest policy.