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January 9/16, 2008

Transforming Clinical Practice Guidelines Into Legislative Mandates: Proceed With Abundant Caution

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliations: Center for Law, Ethics, and Health, University of Michigan School of Public Health, Ann Arbor.

JAMA. 2008;299(2):208-210. doi:10.1001/jama.2007.12

Clinical practice guidelines (CPGs) are an integral part of medical practice and an important quality-of-care indicator. Because CPGs offer the promise of more consistent and effective health care,1 policy makers should promote their development and use. Except in rare instances, however, support should not be transformed into legislative mandates, as was recently considered in Texas.