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Institute of Medicine Advisory: Knowing What’s Really Effective in Health Care


As a recent review of the results of antidepressant studies indicates, the evidence about the effectiveness of clinical products and services can be biased or otherwise questionable. With dozens of new drugs, devices, and other technologies entering the health care marketplace every year and thousands of clinical studies being published, the situation gets more complicated all the time. Physicians, patients, insurers, and others face an ever-daunting challenge of trying to discern which research is valid and relevant to their needs and circumstances.

KNOWING WHAT WORKS IN HEALTH CARE: A ROADMAP FOR THE NATION, a new report from the Institute of Medicine, assesses current efforts to evaluate the effectiveness of clinical products and services and generate clinical practice guidelines. It recommends a strategy for achieving reliable, unbiased information about what works best, which would help reduce the use of questionable products and services and better target therapies to the patients most likely to benefit from them.

Advance copies will be available to reporters only beginning at noon EST on Wednesday, Jan. 23. THE REPORT IS EMBARGOED AND NOT FOR PUBLIC RELEASE BEFORE 4 P.M. EDT ON THURSDAY, JAN. 24. Reporters can obtain a copy by contacting the National Academies’ Office of News and Public Information at tel. 202-334-2138 or e-mail


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