The Department of Health and Human Services is seeking suggestions on what to include in a national database of comparative effectiveness research that will be available to the public online, the Kansas Health Institute News Service
reports. "The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services published notice [Monday] in the Federal Register that it seeks suggestions on the sources of information to include in the inventory, how to categorize them, and ways to encourage use of the inventory once it is established. The agency also seeks suggestions for a business model to make the inventory 'sustainable.'" Comparative effectiveness research, at times controversial, compares medical treatments to determine the best options. Some say it could lead to rationing of health care if the government decides to reimburse for some treatments and not for others. The deadline for comments — which can be submitted through regulations.gov — is Aug. 9 (7/19). Nextgov
: The 2009 stimulus act set aside $1.1 billion for comparative effectiveness research. "HHS envisions a site that is searchable, simple to update and makes it easy to gauge gaps in available research, according to the notice. The site also will supply users with information on how to conduct comparative effectiveness research and how to translate findings into language that is understandable to policymakers and health care decision-makers. The government did not seek advice on research methodologies or on specific studies to include" (Sternstein, 7/19).