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First Annual Report to Congress on High-Priority Evidence Gaps for Clinical Preventive Services


The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF or Task Force), an independent body of experts in preventive medicine and primary care, works to improve the health of all Americans by making evidence-based recommendations about the effectiveness of clinical preventive services and health promotion. The recommendations made by the USPSTF address clinical preventive services for adults and children, and include screening tests, counseling services, and preventive medications. The Task Force makes its recommendations based on comprehensive, systematic reviews and careful assessment of the available medical evidence.

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 charges the USPSTF with making an annual report to Congress that identifies gaps in the evidence base and recommends priority areas that deserve further examination. This is the first annual report from the USPSTF, delivered to Congress in October 2011. In this report, the USPSTF identifies the following high-priority evidence gaps that can be addressed through targeted research.


Table of Contents

Executive Summary
Introduction
Background
Role of the USPSTF in Clinical Prevention
Major Activities of the USPSTF in 2010-2011
Current Evidence Gaps Deserving of Further Research
   High-Priority Evidence Gaps for Screening Tests
   High-Priority Evidence Gaps for Behavioral Interventions
   High-Priority Evidence Gaps in Clinical Preventive Services Targeting Specific Populations and Age Groups
Next Steps for the USPSTF in 2012
Conclusion
Appendix A. 2011 Members of the USPSTF
Appendix B. USPSTF Partner Organizations
Appendix C. Complete Listing of All USPSTF Specific Recommendations as of September 2011

Executive Summary

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF or Task Force), an independent body of experts in preventive medicine and primary care, works to improve the health of all Americans by making evidence-based recommendations about the effectiveness of clinical preventive services and health promotion. The recommendations made by the USPSTF address clinical preventive services for adults and children, and include screening tests, counseling services, and preventive medications. The Task Force makes its recommendations based on comprehensive, systematic reviews and careful assessment of the available medical evidence.

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 charges the USPSTF with making an annual report to Congress that identifies gaps in the evidence base and recommends priority areas that deserve further examination. This is the first annual report from the USPSTF, delivered to Congress in October 2011. In this report, the USPSTF identifies the following high-priority evidence gaps that can be addressed through targeted research:

Screening tests that deserve further research:

  1. Screening for Coronary Heart Disease With New and Old Technologies
  2. Screening for Colorectal Cancer With New Modalities
  3. Screening for Hepatitis C
  4. Screening for Hip Dysplasia in Newborns

Behavioral intervention research topics that deserve further research:

  1. Moderate- to Low-Intensity Counseling for Obesity
  2. Interventions in Primary Care to Prevent Child Abuse and Neglect
  3. Screening for Illicit Drug Use in Primary Care

In the Affordable Care Act, Congress also requested that the USPSTF identify evidence gaps that prevent it from making recommendations that target specific populations or age groups. In this report, the USPSTF highlights the following key areas:

Evidence gaps relating to specific populations and age groups that deserve further research:

  1. Screening for Osteoporosis in Men
  2. Screening and Treatment for Depression in Children
  3. Screening and Counseling for Alcohol Misuse in Adolescents
  4. Aspirin Use to Prevent Heart Attacks and Strokes in Adults Ages 80 Years and Older

The USPSTF will continue its work to independently evaluate the evidence on clinical preventive services to empower health care professionals, health care systems, and the American people to make informed decisions about their health and health care.

The USPSTF hopes that by identifying these evidence gaps and prioritizing these areas for research, it will inspire public and private researchers to collaborate and target their efforts to generate new knowledge and fill current evidence gaps so that in the near future, the USPSTF will be able to develop definitive recommendations on these important topics.

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Current as of December 2011


Internet Citation:

First Annual Report to Congress on High-Priority Evidence Gaps for Clinical Preventive Services. November 2011.U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. http://www.uspreventiveservicestaskforce.org/annlrpt/index.html


 


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