A Busy Time for CER

For the National Pharmaceutical Council and other organizations following the latest developments in comparative effectiveness research (CER), the past few weeks have been exciting and energizing. Last month we saw the appointment of the Board of Governors for the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI), the new public-private entity created by the health reform law. Their appointments marked the first step of many in the process to establish this Institute and further expand the conduct of CER that can help to improve patient health outcomes.

At the beginning of October, the dialogue on CER continued with a briefing hosted by the health policy journal Health Affairs. The briefing, sponsored in conjunction with NPC, the WellPoint Foundation, and the Association of American Medical Colleges, showcased authors from the journal’s October special edition on CER that assesses how a significant increase in investment in CER could affect health care in the United States and what may lie ahead for PCORI as it oversees this research. Respected CER experts, including Project Hope Senior Fellow Gail Wilensky, Outcome Chief Scientific Officer Nancy Dreyer, and Medco Research Institute Chief Medical Officer and President Robert Epstein, outlined some of the challenges that must be addressed during their presentations to the standing-room only crowd. (Watch brief interviews with study authors).

With the heightened interest in CER, NPC formally launched its Daily CER Newsfeed as a means of providing a critical capture of relevant CER information both via email and online. The tool provides the latest developments from federal and foreign agencies, peer-reviewed journals, companies and associations, and a wide variety of news sources. More information on this service and how to subscribe can be found in this issue of EVIdently.

Finally, last week NPC announced the addition of Robert W. Dubois, MD, PhD, to the organization as its new chief science officer. In this role, Dr. Dubois will oversee NPC’s research on health policy issues related to evidence-based medicine, comparative effectiveness review and the value of improved health outcomes. Dr. Dubois was previously the chief medical officer at Cerner LifeSciences and authored the NPC-funded study, Demystifying CER: A Case Study Learning Guide.

We’re excited about these recent developments, and we hope that you enjoy reading about them in this month’s issue of EVIdently.