Boston, Mass., April 29, 2011 – The Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER), a leading academic comparative effectiveness research group based at the Massachusetts General Hospital’s Institute for Technology Assessment, today announced that the inaugural public meeting of the New England Comparative Effectiveness Public Advisory Council (CEPAC) will be held Saturday, June 11, 2011 in Boston.  The CEPAC members, representing a wide variety of backgrounds, specialties and perspectives from all six New England states, will be reviewing ICER’s adaptation of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality’s (AHRQ) review of atrial fibrillation.  The adapted review will be available online on or about May 20, 2011.

“This first, public meeting of CEPAC represents an important milestone,” stated Steven D. Pearson, MD, MSc, President of ICER.  “It represents an attempt to build a transparent process through which clinicians and the public can help provide guidance on how to interpret evidence on clinical effectiveness and value and apply that evidence in practice and policy across New England.”

Meeting Details

Date: Saturday, June 11, 2011
Time:10:00 AM – 3:30 PM ET
Location:Simches Research Center
Massachusetts General Hospital
185 Cambridge Street, Room 3110
Boston, MA 02114

Members of the public wishing to attend the meeting must register by June 8, 2011 by visiting the “Contact Us” section of  The website also includes instructions for those wishing to submit written comments ahead of time, and those requesting the opportunity to make public comments at the meeting.

CEPAC is a new regional body whose goal is to provide objective, independent guidance on the application of medical evidence to clinical practice and payer policy decisions across New England.  Supported by a federal grant from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), and with backing from a consortium of New England state health policy leaders, CEPAC will hold public meetings to consider evidence reviews of medical tests and treatments and provide judgments regarding how the evidence can best be used across New England to improve the quality and value of health care services.  CEPAC consists of practicing physicians with experience in evaluating and using evidence in the practice of healthcare, as well as patient/public members with experience in health policy, patient advocacy and public health.  ICER is managing the day-to-day operations of CEPAC as part of its federally funded RAPiD (Regional Adaptation for Payer Policy Decisions) initiative meant to develop and test new ways to adapt federal evidence reviews to improve their usefulness for patients, clinicians, and payers.  A list of CEPAC members, and other information about the project, is available online at

About ICER
The Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER), based at the Massachusetts General Hospital’s Institute for Technology Assessment (ITA) and an affiliate of Harvard Medical School, provides independent evaluation of the clinical effectiveness and comparative value of new and emerging technologies. Structured as a fully transparent organization, ICER seeks to achieve its ultimate mission of informing public policy and spurring innovation in the use of evidence to improve the value of health care for all.  For more information, please visit