The Pacific Northwest Evidence-based Practice Center (EPC) conducts systematic reviews of health care topics for federal and state agencies, professional associations, and foundations. These reviews report the evidence from clinical research studies and the quality of that evidence for use by clinicians, employers, policymakers, researchers, and others in making decisions about the provision of health care services and health research. The reports may be used by public-and private-sector organizations to assist in improving the quality of health care, informing the development of clinical practice guidelines, and informing reimbursement and coverage policies. The Pacific Northwest EPC also participates in research on systematic review methods.
The EPC at Oregon Health & Science University was founded in 1997 under the directorship of Mark Helfand, MD, MPH, with funding from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). Now under the leadership of Roger Chou, MD, the Pacific Northwest EPC is a collaboration of Oregon Health & Science University in Portland, Oregon, the University of Washington CHASE Alliance in Seattle, and Spectrum Research, Inc. in Tacoma, Washington. The EPC has received funding from AHRQ, the Drug Effectiveness Review Project, the National Institutes of Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and various professional associations and foundations. The EPC at OHSU was previously known as the Oregon EPC.
EPC investigators come from a wide variety of disciplines within the partner institutions. Investigators with the Evidence-based Practice Center have a particular interest in diagnostic technology assessment, prevention, comparative effectiveness, evidence-based informatics, and health services research. In the past faculty affiliated with the Center have investigated a wide range of topics, including hepatitis C, pressure ulcers, traumatic brain injury, pain management, drug effectiveness, cancer screening and treatment, HIV infection screening and prevention, telehealth, public reporting, menopausal symptoms, osteoporosis, vaginal birth after cesarean section, field triage of trauma, mental health, and substance use disorders.