US Institute of Medicine recommends new body to assess what works in health care

BMJ 2008; 336 doi: (Published 31 January 2008) Cite this as: BMJ 2008;336:236
  1. Janice Hopkins Tanne
  1. 1New York

    The Institute of Medicine, part of the US National Academy of Sciences, recommended last week that the country needs an independent programme to evaluate “which diagnostic, treatment, and prevention services work best for various patients and circumstances.”

    The institute’s report proposes a single entity to provide “credible, unbiased information.” It would be overseen by an advisory board “constituted to minimize bias,” and its scope seems to be similar to that of the United Kingdom’s National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE).

    “Under the status quo, the quality of systematic reviews is variable and findings are often unreliable even when published …

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