You’ve heard the phrase "garbage in, garbage out." The same adage holds true for research: use garbage methods, and you’ll have garbage results. And with the billions of dollars in public and private funds being spent on research, particularly comparative effectiveness research, it’s imperative for us to ensure that the research is designed, conducted and analyzed appropriately so that it can be utilized properly in health care decision making. In theory, good research methods should bring good (or useful) results. It follows, then, that these good results can be used by patients and their providers to make informed decisions about their health care treatments.
Later this month, the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute will be releasing a draft of its methodology committee report, which will set the groundwork for the standards and types of research methods that can be used to develop comparative effectiveness research.
To help you better understand the different types of studies that will likely be discussed in the methodology report, this month NPC will be posting a series of articles examining the common study designs, including randomized controlled trials, meta-analyses, observational studies, and related CER concerns.
In the meantime, we’d like to share with you a few related resources on CER: