As evaluators, we all love the notion of evidence-based policy, don’t we? So what could possibly be better than this stunning example – reblogged from Carl Maxim’s site – of how to implement it in practice? Britain’s first hospital built entirely on the power of suggestion is to be opened next week as a cost-effective solution to the rising price of healthcare. The Royal London Placebo is totally fabricated, offers no actual treatments and will be manned entirely by extras from TV shows such as Casualty and Holby City.
Read the whole post –> The Friday Funny: World’s First Placebo Hospital
In the medical profession in particular, there are some very rigid beliefs about what constitutes good enough “evidence of effectiveness” to justify offering, recommending, allowing patients to try, or even just not vehemently opposing a particular type of treatment for a patient. There are some glimmers of hope in other sectors (e.g. in the Best Evidence Synthesis work here in New Zealand). But there are still three areas where there are very serious challenges in building a credible evidence base given the kinds of constraints and realities surrounding them. They are: (1) cutting-edge treatments; (2) treatments that are by their very nature tailored/individualized rather than standardized across patients or populations; and (3) learning what works for small sub-populations
Read the whole post –> What constitutes “evidence”? Implications for cutting-edge, tailored treatments, and small sub-populations