TABLE 2-3 Examples of Organizations That Establish Clinical Guidelines and Recommendations




The ACC has partnered with the AHA to develop guidelines for evidence-based cardiovascular care since 1980. Writing groups are specifically charged with performing a formal literature review, weighing the strength of evidence for or against a particular treatment or procedure, and including estimates of expected health outcomes when data exist.


In 1981, the ACP launched the Clinical Efficacy Assessment Project to evaluate advances in medicine and develop clinical practice guidelines based on the best evidence available. Current guidelines are based on evidence reports commissioned by AHRQ and produced by EPCs.


The ADA has established the Evidence Analysis Library, which consists of relevant nutritional research and evidence-based guidelines.


The U.S. Public Health Service convened USPSTF in 1984, and since 1998 it has been sponsored by AHRQ. The USPSTF consists of a panel of private-sector experts, and its recommendations are regarded as the “gold standard” for clinical preventive services.

American Diabetes Association

The American Diabetes Association funds research, publishes scientific findings, and conducts programs nationwide. Clinical practice guidelines and recommendations are developed from literature reviews by clinicians and are reviewed by the Executive Committee.


ASCO convenes expert panels to develop clinical practice guidelines for methods of cancer treatment and care. The manual for generating these guidelines is updated regularly to reflect significant changes.


The NHLBI organizes voluntary expert panels to develop clinical practice guidelines related to heart, blood vessel, lung, and blood diseases in children and adults.

NOTE: ACC = American College of Cardiology; ACP = American College of Physicians; ADA = American Dietetic Association; AHA = American Heart Association; ASCO = American Society of Clinical Oncology; NHLBI = National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.

SOURCES: ACC (2007); ACP (2007); ADA (2007); AHRQ (2007a); American Diabetes Association (2007); ASCO (2007); Eagle and Guyton (2004); NHLBI (2007).

impartial assessments of the scientific evidence to reach conclusions about the effectiveness of a broad range of clinical preventive services, including screening, counseling, and preventive medications. Its recommendations are intended for use in the primary care setting.

Under contract to AHRQ, an EPC conducts systematic reviews of the

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