WASHINGTON, D.C. – A new report from the National Pharmaceutical Council makes a serious study of clinical trials and studies. Their conclusion is that if research is interpreted poorly, the results can be misunderstood.
The report, entitled “Demystifying Comparative Effectiveness Research: A Case Study Learning Guide,” was written by Robert W. Dubois, MD, PhD, chief medical officer of Cerner LifeSciences, and Sylvia L. Kindermann, MPH, Cerner LifeSciences senior research associate.
The report discusses the three most prominent types of research, and what they mean. There are randomized controlled trials, or RCTs, wherein subjects are randomly allocated into study and control groups. There is also meta-analysis, which synthesizes data across a series of similar studies. And lastly there are observational studies, which follow participants over a period of time. The report details a guide on how to best evaluate each kind of study, and it discusses case studies in each of the three types of comparative effectiveness research.
“If conducted and interpreted correctly, these types of research can help to inform health care decision-making. If, however, such studies are conducted or interpreted incorrectly, the comparative answers from these studies may be inaccurate, or worse, misleading,” Dubois and Kindermann noted in a press release.
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