Appendix BEffective Health Care Program Selection Criteria

Publication Details


  • Represents a health care drug, intervention, device, technology or health care system/setting available (or soon to be available) in the United States.
  • Relevant to 1013 enrollees (Medicare, Medicaid, S-CHIP, other federal health care programs.
  • Represents one of the priority conditions designated by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).


  • Represents a significant disease burden, large proportion or priority population.
  • Is of high public interest; affects health care decision-making, outcomes, or costs for a large proportion of the U.S. population or for a priority population in particular.
  • Was nominated/strongly supported by one or more stakeholder groups.
  • Represents important uncertainty for decisionmakers.
  • Incorporates issues around both clinical benefits and potential clinical harms.
  • Represents important variation in clinical care, or controversy in what constitutes appropriate clinical care.
  • Represent high costs to consumers, patients, health care systems or payers; due to common use, high unit costs, or high associated costs.

Desirability of New Research/Duplication

  • Would not be redundant (i.e., the proposed topic is not already covered by available or soon-to-be available high quality systematic review by AHRQ or others).


  • Effectively uses existing research and knowledge by considering adequacy of research for conducting a systematic review, and newly available evidence.

Potential Impact

  • Potential for significant health impact, significant economic impact, potential change, potential risk from inaction, addressing inequities and vulnerable populations, and/or addressing a topic with clear implications for resolving important dilemmas in health and health care decisions made by one or more stakeholder groups.