Resource developed to help with trial outcomes

The results of clinical trials are set to become easier to compare after a University of Liverpool statistician co-founded the Core Outcome Measures in Effectiveness Trials (COMET) Initiative to help address the lack of uniformity in outcomes.

The COMET Initiative,  co-founded by Professor Paula Williamson, Head of the University’s Department of Biostatistics and Director of the MRC North West Hub for Trials Methodology Research, is bringing people interested in the development and application of core outcome sets (COS) together. There is a growing awareness about problems caused by inconsistency in the outcomes measured in clinical trials and the work that the COMET Initiative is doing to try and combat this, as highlighted in the latest edition of Nature Medicine.

As part of the COMET Initiative the researchers have developed a database of studies relevant to the development of COS for use in clinical trials. The importance of the use of COS is increasingly recognised by research funders, with the National Institute for Health Research’s Health Technology Assessment programme in the UK, the Health Research Board in Ireland and the charity Arthritis Research UK, all now highlighting this to people seeking funding for new studies.

The COMET initiative will be holding its fourth annual meeting in November 2014 and more information on this event and the project can be found on the website.

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