Catherine Meyers, M.D.
June 06, 2018
On May 16, 2018, the NIH Common Fund sponsored a workshop on embedded pragmatic clinical trials (PCTs) of therapeutic A vs. B interventions. This type of PCT, which compares two or more therapeutic medical interventions in real-world settings, holds exciting potential for bridging the gap between evidence, practice, and policy. The one-day workshop included information on the progress of PCTs and strategies for conducting future research.
The workshop focused on experiences from the NIH Health Care Systems Research Collaboratory, also known as the NIH Collaboratory. Initiated in 2012, the NIH Collaboratory has launched nine large-scale PCTs in partnership with several U.S. health care systems. The trials are being conducted in real-world settings of routine clinical care and have served as case studies for addressing challenges of pragmatic research. Knowledge gained from the trials has allowed the NIH Collaboratory to develop an extensive set of methods and best practices for embedded PCTs. There is now considerable interest to expand the interventions tested within the NIH Collaboratory and specifically to develop additional tools and strategies that test distinct therapeutic medical interventions, such as A vs. B trials.