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Friday, 28 October 2011

Testing Treatments: better research for better healthcare (New edition)

Medicine shouldn't be about authority, and the most important question anyone can ask on any claim is simple: "how do you know?". The 2nd edition of "Testing treatments" is about the answer to that question.

This is not a "best treatments guide" to the effects of individual therapies. Rather,it highlight issues that are fundamental to ensuring that research is soundly based, properly done, able to distinguish harmful from helpful treatments, and designed to answer questions that matter to patients, the public, and health professionals.

There is expanded coverage of the benefits and harms of screening in a separate chapter (Chapter 4) entitled 'Earlier is not necessarily better.' and in 'Regulating tests of treatments: help or hindrance?' (Chapter 9) the authors describe how research can become over-policed to the detriment of patients. In an important chapter (Chapter 12) it is asked: "So what makes for better healthcare?" and shows how the lines of evidence can be drawn together in ways that can make a real difference to all of us. The last chapter gives a blueprint for a better future and an action plan (Chapter 13)

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