When is the Evidence “Enough” to Make a Health Care Decision?

At any given time, work is taking place in hundreds of laboratories throughout the country to develop new and better ways of combating disease and protecting our health and well-being.  As the results of this research becomes more widely known, how long does it take before this new information changes the actual practice of medicine in hospitals, clinics and physicians’ offices?

According to the Institute of Medicine, it takes an average of 17 years for new data to become a component in everyday patient care. But what determines that timeframe? What factors dictate how rapidly clinical practices change in response to new knowledge?

That’s the issue being addressed in a webinar hosted by the National Pharmaceutical Council (NPC) on July 31 at 1 p.m., ET. The webinar, titled “When Is the Evidence ‘Enough’ to Make a Health Care Decision?,” takes on a particular importance given the significant investment being made in comparative effectiveness research. We can better achieve an optimal health care system for all Americans if we can get a firmer grasp on the factors that either speed or impede the system-wide adoption of new medical knowledge.

Whether it’s, as NPC mentions in its promotional material for the event, Angelina Jolie raising awareness of breast cancer and genetics or reimbursement issues surrounding new therapies, there are a host of issues affecting the collective embrace of new ideas. This webinar is doing a valuable service in exploring those issues.

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