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12:00 AM
 | 
Nov 16, 2009
 |  BioCentury  |  Politics, Policy & Law

Getting real on CER

Like it or not, the allocation of $1.1 billion of U.S. economic stimulus funds for comparative effectiveness research, and commitments to ongoing support for CER in pending healthcare reform legislation, mean that formal, systematic comparative effectiveness assessments eventually will become a permanent fixture of American healthcare.

The open question is what research will be conducted, how it will be conducted, and even more important, how it will be presented. Will it be conducted in ways that modify prescribing practices? And if it does, will it be oriented toward optimizing care or minimizing costs?

Patients, physicians and life sciences companies have a common interest in collaborating to ensure the creation of systems that maximize the chances that patients will get the best care, and that policies will promote patient-oriented innovation.

If they don't seize the opportunity, CER will be defined by the likes of the "Worst Pills, Best Pills" newsletter published by Public Citizen's Health Research Group, or by "Best Buy" advice on drugs provided by Consumer Reports.

The National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) is getting in front of the CER challenge by creating a Comparative Therapeutic Index...

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