Federal initiatives to support rapid learning about new technologies
National Health Programs
United States Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality
Health policy and financing reforms place increasing emphasis on the ability of doctors and patients to make informed, cost-conscious care decisions. The federal government is supporting new initiatives in Medicare to increase the supply of reliable information on the benefits and risks of health care technologies. Medicare also is working with the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) to evaluate the comparative effectiveness of prescription drugs and other items or services. The value of these efforts will depend on coordination among individuals and institutions in the public and private sectors; clarity about focus, purpose, and priorities; and adequate and reliable long-term funding.