Summary of: Ramsey SD, Adamson BJ, Wang X, Bargo D, Baxi SS, Ghosh S, Meropol NJ. Using electronic health record data to identify comparator populations for comparative effectiveness research. Journal of Medical Economics. 2020.
EHR-derived RWD can enhance health technology appraisals by providing population-level evaluations of cancer therapies. This enables researchers to select comparator populations with high levels of clinical specificity. Because real world use of treatments does not always match practice guidelines or clinical trial inclusion criteria, choosing comparator populations involves a tradeoff between matching to replicate “optimized” care similar to a trial-defined population versus “realized” care that is more representative of real-world practice. This article delves into how to determine the appropriate population when conducting comparative effectiveness research.