Recruiting seniors into drug trials may help close evidence gap

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A growing number of scientists are considering a new approach to drug trials. It includes "real world" testing on more elderly patients with multiple chronic conditions.

Most drug trials have relatively limited goals, and do not consider long-term effects and possible interactions with other diseases or other medications, according to The New York Times. This leaves what many scientists and doctors call an evidence gap, meaning that, while there is a lot of information on how a drug will react when a person is young and healthy there is almost no information on how these drugs will affect seniors with multiple conditions and prescriptions.

To correct this information imbalance, researchers are recruiting more seniors into clinical trials to get a better sense of how the drugs react and interact in a "real world" setting. To that end, many medical researchers, societies and insurers are asking Congress to establish an Institute for Comparative Effectiveness Research to identify and assess research gaps, according to the Times.
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