An analysis of the level of evidence behind treatments recommended by the Danish Medicines Council

C. L. Petersen*, M. R. Hansen, T. Øhlenschlæger, P. Damkier

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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Abstract

Objectives: We aimed to investigate the quality of evidence and the expected added clinical value of treatments recommended by the Danish Medicines Council (DMC). Study design: This was an observational study. Methods: The DMC prepares reports on drugs considered for possible new standard treatments in Danish hospitals. These reports evaluate the available evidence on efficacy and safety. The quality of evidence is systematically rated by the Grading of Recommendations, Assessment, Development and Evaluation (GRADE) criteria, and estimates of added clinical value are presented. The recommendations take into account expected economic implications of new treatments. The publicly available reports up until December 29, 2021, were downloaded from the DMC Web page. Reports on drugs marked “recommended” were included. Data on quality of evidence, expected clinical value, and economic implications were imputed in a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet. Results: Seventy-nine reports were included in the analysis. In 79% of these, the quality of evidence was rated low (24%) or very low (55%), whereas no recommendations were based on evidence rated as high quality. Three (5%) of recommended treatments were expected to add large clinical value. Conclusions: Most recommendations by the DMC are based on evidence formally rated as low or very low quality by GRADE, and no recommendations were based on evidence rated as high quality. The added clinical value of the treatments was often not documented and rarely large. Continued attention to improve the clinical evidence behind national recommendations is necessary.

Original languageEnglish
JournalPublic Health
Volume216
Pages (from-to)27-29
ISSN0033-3506
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 The Author(s)

Keywords

  • Added clinical value
  • Danish Medicines Council
  • Drug recommendations
  • Evidence
  • National recommendations

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