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Invited Commentary
March 28, 2011

Can We Trust Cardiovascular Practice Guidelines?Comment on “Conflicts of Interest in Cardiovascular Clinical Practice Guidelines”

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliation: Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, The Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Cleveland, Ohio.

Arch Intern Med. 2011;171(6):584-585. doi:10.1001/archinternmed.2011.94

Clinical practice guidelines play an enormously important role in society and the practice of medicine. Individual physicians use CPGs to determine which diagnostic tests and therapeutic strategies are most appropriate for their patients. Government and third-party payers use CPGs to determine which procedures and drugs should receive reimbursement. Hospitals and clinics use these CPGs to decide when innovative, but expensive, therapies are sufficiently mature to warrant a major investment. Increasingly, government, the public and the media use CPGs as a benchmark to gauge the quality of medical practice for both hospitals and individual physicians.13 Accordingly, protecting the integrity and reliability of CPGs is essential to society and fundamental to the practice of evidence-based medicine.4

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