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Research In Brief

This article was originally published in The Gray Sheet

Executive Summary

Five steps to CER success?: Three contributors to high-level discussions on comparative effectiveness research (CER) propose a five-step process toward developing a national CER program in a New England Journal of Medicine article published online Feb. 17. Jordan VanLare of the Department of Health and Human Services, Patrick Conway, executive director of the Federal Coordinating Council for CER, and Harold Cox, co-chair of the Institute of Medicine's Committee on CER Prioritization, suggest first establishing an overall funding strategy. The program should focus on a coordinated portfolio of research on priority topics, infrastructure enhancement, and translation and adoption. Next, it should create an initial list of priority topics and evaluate current knowledge on each, and, with outside input, choose research methods that will fill the evidence gaps for specific topics. Finally, the program should strive for a "balanced portfolio of high-impact research topics" and publicly report on its progress. Last summer, IOM submitted a report to Congress with 100 recommended priorities for federally funded CER (1"The Gray Sheet" July 6, 2009)

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