Health Care Delivery
Federal Register, Vol. 63, No. 70, page 18027Date: April 13, 1998
Agency: Agency for Health Care Policy and Research, HHS
Summary: The Agency for Health Care Policy and Research (AHCPR) invites organizations, professional societies, and other developers of clinical practice guidelines to submit completed guidelines for inclusion in the World Wide Web-based National Guideline Clearinghouse™ (NGC).
AHCPR, in partnership with the American Association of Health Plans (AAHP) and the American Medical Association (AMA), is sponsoring the development of the NGC to promote widespread access to guidelines by the health care community and interested individuals. The NGC is designed to be a comprehensive database of clinical practice guidelines. Availability on the Web is scheduled for Fall 1998.
Data on each guideline will include: 1) a structured abstract containing information about the guideline and its development; (2) a comparison of guidelines covering similar topics, showing areas of similarities and differences; and (3) the full text of the guideline (when available) or links to full text (when not) and information on how to obtain the full-text guideline. In addition, the NGC will have a topic-related electronic mail forum for registered users to exchange information on clinical practice guidelines, their development, implementation, and use.
Dates: Guidelines will be received on an ongoing basis by ECRI at the address below. ECRI, a nonprofit health services research organization, will perform the technical work of the NGC, under contract with AHCPR.
Addresses: Organizations interested in contributing to the NGC should submit two hard copies of each guideline and related background information in typed format and electronic (if available), including name, address, phone, and E-mail address of a contact person to: Vivian Coates, NGC Project Director, ECRI, 5200 Butler Pike, Plymouth Meeting, PA 19462-1298.
For further information, contact:
Jean Slutsky, NGC Project OfficerCenter for Practice and Technology AssessmentAgency for Healthcare Research and Quality540 Gaither Road, 6th FloorRockville, MD 20850Telephone: (301) 427-1600E-mail: JSlutsky@ahrq.gov
Under Title IX of the Public Health Service Act (42 U.S.C. 299-299c-6), AHCPR is charged with enhancing the quality, appropriateness, and effectiveness of health care services and access to such services. AHCPR accomplishes these goals through scientific research and through promotion of improvements in clinical practice, including prevention of diseases and other health conditions, and improvements in the organization, financing, and delivery of health care services.
Increased interest in improving the quality of health care, reducing uncertainty and unnecessary variability in health care decisionmaking, as well as rising health care costs, have stimulated a marked growth over the past 5 years in the development and use of clinical practice guidelines. Yet, many health providers, plans, systems, and purchasers have difficulty gaining access to and keeping abreast of the many clinical practice guidelines now available.
The NGC employs the definition of clinical practice guideline developed by the Institute of Medicine:
"Clinical practice guidelines are systematically developed statements to assist practitioner and patient decisions about appropriate health care for specific clinical circumstances."[Institute of Medicine (1990). Clinical Practice Guidelines: Directions for a New Program,M.J. Field and K.N Lohr (eds.) Washington, DC: National Academy Press (page 38).]
"Clinical practice guidelines are systematically developed statements to assist practitioner and patient decisions about appropriate health care for specific clinical circumstances."
[Institute of Medicine (1990). Clinical Practice Guidelines: Directions for a New Program,M.J. Field and K.N Lohr (eds.) Washington, DC: National Academy Press (page 38).]
A clinical practice guideline must meet all of the following criteria to be included in the NGC: