Resources for Comparative Effectiveness Research

Steve Simon


I attended an interesting webinar on Comparative Effectiveness Research (CER). I always try to take notes during presentations like this, but my notes are often a poor amagalm of random thoughts and realizations. What I did find, though, during this webinar, were links to two important resources for CER.

  1. The website of the Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute is the first resource. Wikipedia has a nice brief explanation of this institute: “The Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute is a United States based non-governmental institute created as part of a modification to the Social Security Act by clauses in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. The body is charged with examining the “relative health outcomes, clinical effectiveness, and appropriateness” of different medical treatments by evaluating existing studies and conducting its own. Its 19-member board is to include patients, doctors, hospitals, drug makers, device manufacturers, insurers, payers, government officials and health experts. It will not have the power to mandate or even endorse coverage rules or reimbursement for any particular treatment. Medicare may take the Institute’s research into account when deciding what procedures it will cover, so long as the new research is not the sole justification and the agency allows for public input.”

  2. The Institute of Medicine report on Comparative Effectiveness Research is available in a book format or as a free PDF file and covers research priorities for CER. Here is a brief description from the introduction to this report: “Comparative effectiveness research (CER) identifies what works best for which patients under what circumstances. Congress, in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009, tasked the Institute of Medicine (IOM) to recommend national priorities for research questions to be addressed by CER and supported by ARRA funds. In its 2009 report, Initial National Priorities for Comparative Effectiveness Research, the authoring committee establishes a working definition of CER, develops a priority list of research topics to be undertaken with ARRA funding using broad stakeholder input, and identifies the necessary requirements to support a robust and sustainable CER enterprise. The full list of priorities and recommendations can be found in the below report brief.”

You can find an earlier version of this page on my original website.