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Obama's stimulus package funds research on cutting costs

Washington Post, March 17, 2009

President Obama has dedicated $1.1 billion in the economic stimulus package for federal agencies to oversee studies on the merits of competing medical treatments. The comparative effectiveness research approach is aimed at finding the best treatments at the best prices. Proponents say reducing ineffective or unproven care is one way to rein in health costs. Skeptics, however, say Obama's decision to invest heavily in such research will lead to European-style rationing in which patients are denied lifesaving therapies to save money.