Agency to research best use of medical
OTTAWA – The
Canadian Agency for Drugs and Technologies in Health (CADTH) will
conduct a $3-million research project on the optimal use of medical
isotopes and alternatives.
The project will provide guidance to the health system on how to
optimize the management and use of the medical isotope technetium-99m
and will consider appropriate alternative medical isotopes and medical
imaging equipment. Funding for this research was included in the
Government of Canada’s Budget 2010.
CADTH is a national body that provides Canada’s federal, provincial, and
territorial healthcare decision-makers with evidence-based, impartial
advice about the effectiveness and efficiency of drugs and other health
The project, funded through a grant from Health Canada, will focus on
the identification and development of improved policies, protocols, and
standards to help healthcare decision-makers optimize the use of the
medical isotope technetium-99m, as well as the use of alternative
medical isotopes and medical imaging equipment.
“The medical isotope shortage forced everyone to be creative, some found
better ways to use medical isotopes while others came up with
alternatives with equally or more effective diagnostic imaging
solutions,” said Health Minister Leona Aglukkaq (pictured). “This
initiative will help determine how best to use our available medical
resources to provide timely access and more effective and sustainable
options for patients.”
Medical isotopes are used in a number of diagnostic medical imaging
tests to help physicians detect medical conditions ranging from cancer
to heart disease.
“The guidance that emerges from this project will help ensure that
Canadians and their health care providers can continue to rely on
appropriate and effective diagnostic imaging tests,” said Dr. Brian
O’Rourke, President and CEO, Canadian Agency for Drugs and Technologies
Independent research, subject matter experts.
CADTH has assembled a committee of 23 distinguished representatives from
health professions, institutions, regions, ministries of health, the
public, and experts in scientific research and methodology. The Medical
Isotopes and Imaging Modalities Advisory Committee (MIIMAC) provides
advice for the research project and develops the guidance that will
emerge from the findings.
CADTH is an independent, not-for-profit agency funded by Canadian
federal, provincial, and territorial governments to provide credible,
impartial advice and evidence-based information about the effectiveness
of drugs and other health technologies to Canadian health care
decision-makers. Established in 1989 by Canada’s health ministers, CADTH
has conducted research on key health care topics, including oral
medications for people with type 2 diabetes, smoking cessation
treatments, and emergency department overcrowding.
Posted February 10, 2011