2016 Comparative Effectiveness Research and the Environment for Health Care Decision-Making


NPC's sixth annual survey of stakeholder views on comparative effectiveness research (CER) and the environment for health care decision-making found that stakeholders continue to have a high perception of the importance of CER, but believe that its full impact is still three to five years in the future.

Specific findings from the survey include the following:

  • Stakeholders noted the growing significance of the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute’s role in establishing research standards and funding and monitoring CER;
  • Patient groups are expected to be highly engaged in setting research priorities;
  • Academia, followed by the biopharmaceutical industry, is viewed as playing a leading role in conducting CER; and
  • The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality is expected to be a leader in translating and communicating research.

The survey also asked respondents about the health care decision-making environment, considering factors that could impact the quality of CER and its usefulness in making treatment and coverage decisions:

  • Stakeholders believe better translation of CER results into actionable recommendations would increase its impact.
  • They remain optimistic that there is movement toward widely agreed-upon research standards, which would provide more consistency in the conduct and evaluation of CER.
  • The use of real-world evidence remains limited in decision-making.
  • Stakeholders believe that the value assessment of treatments remains narrowly focused on clinical effectiveness, rather than taking into account factors that matter to patients, such as quality of life, workplace productivity, adherence to treatments and other outcomes.

The survey, conducted by Scientific & Social Systems on behalf of NPC, was fielded between September 14, 2015, and January 15, 2016, among key stakeholders who are knowledgeable about CER. These stakeholders included researchers/thought leaders; government; insurers/health plans; employers; business coalitions; and associations. A total of 146 stakeholders participated.