Outcomes

Outcomes research seeks to understand the end results of particular health care practices and interventions. End results include effects that people experience and care about, such as change in the ability to function. In particular, for individuals with chronic conditions—where cure is not always possible—end results include quality of life as well as mortality. By linking the care people get to the outcomes they experience, outcomes research has become the key to developing better ways to monitor and improve the quality of care. For clinicians and patients, outcomes research provides evidence about benefits, risks, and results of treatments so they can make more informed decisions. For health care managers and purchasers, outcomes research can identify potentially effective strategies they can implement to improve the quality and value of care.