As more CER results emerge, the approaches we take to communicating and apply results will be increasingly important. We’ll see a growing volume of CER in the years ahead, not only from PCORI but from many private sector researchers as well. And not only from clinical trials, but from new infrastructure like the Clinical Data Research Network that PCORI is creating.
Patient-centered CER has the potential to improve health and increase the quality of health care decision-making. To reach this potential, it is imperative that dissemination of CER findings clearly communicate its limitations, as well as clear information about the subpopulations to which it applies, or does not apply. With information that supports personalized health care decisions, patients get the right care at the right time. Reliance on “cookbook” medicine that treats to the average patient does not allow for individualized patient care and flexible treatment strategies that meet the unique needs of each patient based on the available evidence.
Finally, we’ll see the continued emergence of new health care payment and delivery models that will play a large role in shaping how CER results are applied, how patients are engaged in decision-making, and whether they gain access to the care they need. As these so-called “alternative payment models” take hold, it will be essential to ensure patients, working closely with providers, have a strong voice. To advance PIPC’s principles in these new care models, we will be working with a wide range of stakeholders in 2014 and beyond to promote payment models that include transparent decision-making; give patients access to medical options, and are structured to engage patients as active participants in their health care. Ensuring the appropriate use of patient-centered CER in those models is essential to providing high-quality patient-centered care. Without appropriate incentives, it is difficult to imagine how patient-centered CER could be effectively utilized by patients and their providers in an environment that does not recognize the promise of personalized medicine by providing access to treatment options.
We all need good information to make good decisions about our health, and our health care. Comparative clinical effectiveness research can help us make good health care choices, as long as we have those choices to make. Therefore, PIPC looks forward to the application of patient-centered principles both in the generation of research, and in the use of that research to ensure appropriate access to treatment options.