Today’s New York Times includes an op-ed by Billy Beane, Newt Gingrich and John Kerry about comparative effectiveness research and how to turn America’s health care system around using a lesson from baseball.
Remarkably, a doctor today can get more data on the starting third baseman on his fantasy baseball team than on the effectiveness of life-and-death medical procedures. Studies have shown that most health care is not based on clinical studies of what works best and what does not — be it a test, treatment, drug or technology. Instead, most care is based on informed opinion, personal observation or tradition.
Similarly, a health care system that is driven by robust comparative clinical evidence will save lives and money.