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Press Release Date: November 25, 1996
As part of its program to strengthen the scientific evidence base used by health care
organizations to improve clinical practice, the Agency for Health Care Policy and Research is
accepting proposals to fund Evidence-based Practice Centers (EPCs).
The EPCs will produce evidence reports and technology assessments that will be used by
systems of care, professional societies, purchasers and others. The work of the centers will
provide these organizations with a scientific foundation for developing and implementing their
own clinical practice guidelines, performance measures and other clinical quality improvement
tools, and for making decisions related to the effectiveness or appropriateness of specific health
"This initiative reinforces AHCPR's role as a 'science partner' with public and private
organizations in our mutual efforts to make science-based improvements in the quality,
effectiveness and appropriateness of clinical practice," said Clifton R. Gaus, Sc.D., AHCPR
AHCPR intends to provide support for a group of EPCs to produce evidence reports and
technology assessments on topics identified by AHCPR for which there is significant demand by
potential users. The reports and assessments will be based on comprehensive reviews and
rigorous analyses of the relevant scientific evidence—emphasizing explicit and detailed
documentation of methods, rationale and assumptions—and peer reviews.
AHCPR also is seeking nominations of topics for the centers' evidence reports and technology
assessments. Nominations should focus on specific aspects of the prevention, diagnosis,
treatment and/or management of a particular condition, or on an individual procedure, treatment
"Today's announcements signal the first in a series of exciting new opportunities for AHCPR as
we continue our leadership role in improving the use of evidence in clinical practice," said
Douglas B. Kamerow, M.D., director of the Office of the Forum for Quality and Effectiveness in
Until the new centers are established, AHCPR will convert the work of the last two panels under
its former guideline program into the first evidence reports to be issued under the new program.
These reports will address screening for colorectal cancer and the diagnosis and management of
chronic headache pain. AHCPR also expects to produce two additional evidence reports during
this transition phase in cooperation with public- and private-sector partners. The topics for these
reports will be announced later this fall.
The solicitation for Evidence-based Practice Centers was published in the November 22
Commerce Business Daily. The Request for Proposals (RFP) will be released no sooner than
December 6, 1996. The closing date for proposals will be 90 days after release of the RFP.
For copies of the Evidence-based Practice Centers RFP (AHCPR-97-0001), send a written
request to: AHCPR Contracts Management Staff, Attention: Al Deal, Executive Office Center,
Suite 601, 2101 East Jefferson Street, Rockville, MD, 20852. Include
the requestor's name, affiliation, address, and telephone and telefax numbers.
An announcement regarding nominations of topics for Evidence-based Practice Centers will be
published shortly in the Federal Register. To be considered for the first group of evidence reports,
topic nominations should be submitted within 60 days of the date of publication of the notice to: Douglas B. Kamerow, M.D., M.P.H., Director, Office of the Forum for Quality and
Effectiveness in Health Care, AHCPR, 6000 Executive Blvd., Willco Bldg., Suite 310,
Rockville, MD 20852.
For additional information, contact AHCPR Public Affairs: Salina Prasad, (301) 427-1864.