‘The Evidence Gap’ – examples of interventions despite proof

In Evidence-Based Medicine, Health industry on December 2, 2008 by Alan Lovell Tagged: , , , ,

It is often assumed that evidence-based medicine is all about fabulous new treatments, efficacious but expensive – are they good enough to justify the price tag? But a lot of the work is often around treatments, technologies and interventions that are far less sexy – stuff that’s done all over the country every day, even though there may be little or no evidence base for it.

The New York Times has a series of articles called ‘The Evidence Gap‘ that explores, as they put it, medical treatments used despite scant proof they work and examining steps toward medicine based on evidence. It’s not dryly written, it’s journalism (for better or for worse), and it’s certainly not all just about the science and the medicine. Instead, there’s lots on the culture of medicine and it’s practicioners, it’s researchers, marketeers, administrators, the pharmaceutical companies and of course patients. They are long enough articles to really explore some issues, and worth printing out for an interesting, easy but informative read on the commute home. Dare I opine that you wouldn’t get such quality journalism in the London Times?


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