Improving the relevance, rigor, and timeliness of evidence on the comparative effectiveness of health care treatments and strategies is a critical goal for comparative effectiveness research (CER).1 As a part of the $1.1 billion in support for CER through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, approximately $100 million was provided to build a more robust and flexible infrastructure for conducting CER using prospective electronic clinical data.2 With support from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), AcademyHealth has convened the Electronic Data Methods (EDM) Forum to identify, synthesize, and share lessons learned from 11 projects that are building infrastructure and using electronic clinical data for CER and patient-centered outcomes research (PCOR).

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