Hashtags of the Week (HOTW): Comparative Effectiveness Research (Week of January 21, 2013)

First posted at THL Blog http://wp.me/p1v84h-125

What is Comparative Effectiveness Research?
What is Comparative Effectiveness Research?: http://effectivehealthcare.ahrq.gov/index.cfm/what-is-comparative-effectiveness-research1/

I’ve been tracking the Comparative Effectiveness Research hashtag in Twitter for a while. You will have seen tweets from that stream here earlier in this HOTW series of post. The hashtag is #CER, by the way, but unfortunately it is used for many other topics as well — Carbon Emissions Reduction, Corporate Entrepreneurship Responsibility, food conversations in Turkish, and some sort of technology gadget topic that I haven’t figured out. Ah.

Luckily, the #CER tag when used in the health context has a number of other hashtags with which it is often associated. #eGEMS, #PCOR, #PCORI, and #QI are the most common used companion hashtags, but there are others as well.

#eGEMS = Generating Evidence and Methods to improve patient outcomes

#PCOR = Patient-Centered Outcomes Research

#PCORI = Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute

#QI = Quality Improvement (also “Quite Interesting”)

One of the things that makes it easier to track the health side of the #CER tag is that the CER community has volunteers (National Pharmaceutical Council) who find the stream so valuable they curate, collate, and archive the most relevant tweets from each week, along with brief comments on the high points from each week.

That JAMA article they mentioned? Was actually a 2009 classic from NEJM.

But there was a JAMA article in the collection from the previous week. And an impressive one, too!

Yesterday, our team here at the Taubman Health Sciences Library had a journal club to talk about a classic article on #CER.

That conversation had us looking beyond the issues of CER as a research methodology, and into the foundation of why and how the methodology developed, the purposes it is designed to serve, when and why to choose CER over another methodology such as systematic reviews, the implications of CER for the EVidence-Based Healthcare movement, the strengths and weaknesses of CER compared to other methodologies, and much more. It was a very valuable and interesting hour well spent.

Of course, we aren’t the only ones asking these types of questions about #CER — The FDA, the New York Times, among others.

Thus, you see me inspired today to dig into the #CER stream and explore more about what is there. One very timely notice is the webinar on Monday, next week.

And an upcoming conference at UCSF on using CER to make healthcare more relevant.

One of my colleagues also mentioned an upcoming campus event focusing on chronic diseases, so this was interesting and relevant to that.

The #CER stream seems to contain a regular number of high quality research articles. Definitely worth exploring.

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