The studies conducted by the EyeCare Registry are called clinical outcome studies. The purpose of clinical outcome studies is to provide you with patient data so that you can compare, for example, your outcomes of specific treatments to the patient outcomes of other providers. A clinical outcome study does not tell the provider how to treat patients, it simply asks, “How do you treat your patients?”
EyeCare Registry studies are not structured or intended to accomplish the same goal as scientific studies. Scientific studies are highly structured and are conducted in a very controlled environment within a pre-defined set of patients. The purpose of a typical scientific study is to demonstrate how well a product or process works in the controlled testing situation. There will always be a need for scientific studies in medicine. It is important to understand that registry studies are not intended to replace or serve the same purpose as a scientific study
Payers (insurance companies) are increasingly looking for models that demonstrate that the very best care is being provided to patients. The reason for this is simple: the best care is ultimately the lowest cost care. If a condition is not properly diagnosed, not treated in the most effective ways, or if patients do not comply, the end result will be an increase in the amount of care that has to be provided and ultimately an increase in the cost of care. Clinical outcome studies allow providers to demonstrate that they are providing the most effective care, and payers increasingly want to send patients to providers that are willing and able to provide the evidence that they are delivering the most effective care.
The primary reason that clinical outcome studies are gaining in importance is because patients are demanding the best care possible. As the ability to measure clinical outcomes becomes more common and as the public has increased access to quality information about providers, the patients will drive this trend.