Annals of Health Law   |  June 9, 2012

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Moving the U.S. healthcare system toward greater emphasis on
evidence-based medicine (“EBM”) is an essential part of the nation’s
healthcare reform strategy. The use of clinical practice guidelines (“CPGs”)
is one of the main ways that EBM can be implemented. Much has been
written about CPGs, pointing up their potentials and pitfalls. This update
steps off from that foundational and definitional body of work and
highlights some key developments and issues in the CPG movement over
the past two decades. It concludes with a look at the recent work of the
Institute of Medicine (“IOM”), which has long played a leading role in the
promotion of CPGs. The IOM recently concluded a pair of yearlong
initiatives to refine the methodologies by which medical evidence is
systematically reviewed; these reviews will, in turn, provide the data needed
to develop trustworthy and reliable CPGs.

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