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Past president of ACP to chair IOM panel on comparative effectiveness
Date:3/12/2009

Past president of the American College of Physicians (ACP) and current editor of Annals of Internal Medicine, Harold C. Sox, MD, MACP, has been named to chair the Institute of Medicine's Committee on Comparative Effectiveness Research Priorities. Dr. Sox will lead a panel of nationally renowned medical experts to make recommendations to the U.S. government about which preventive, diagnostic, and treatment services should have the highest priority for research funding using money allotted to the Secretary of the DHHS in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

"No health intervention is without potential harms," said Dr. Sox. "The key element of comparative effectiveness is to identify the treatments, diagnostics, and preventive measures that have the greatest margin of benefit over harms. The objective of comparative effectiveness research is to arm physicians and patients with knowledge about which medical interventions do the most good."

The panel will spend the next three months developing its recommendations to the Secretary and Congress. This initiative will further extend past and future studies by the IOM in the field of comparative effectiveness. These studies include a past study on the national capacity to identify what works in health care and future federally funded studies on standards for systematic reviews of evidence, and standards for developing trustworthy clinical practice guidelines.

Once the report is completed, the IOM will focus its efforts on disseminating information to the public, with the goal of raising awareness and interest in the project's results. The U.S. government will consider funding research in health areas prioritized in the report.

"Medical decision making is complex," said Dr. Sox. "This initiative can provide physicians and patients with clear evidence that can guide choices. Ultimately, we hope to give clinicians a clearer picture of what works best in for a speci
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Contact: Angela Collom
acollom@acponline.org
215-351-2653
American College of Physicians
Source:Eurekalert

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