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Clinical Decision Making
Clinical Decision Making
Prescription drugs are prescribed during clinical encounters. Thorough and effective patient-provider communication about the benefits, risks, costs and alternatives to prescription medicines is a vital part of clinical care. The Center supports research and advocacy to identify and overcome barriers to patient-provider communication to improve safe medication use and to maximize adherence.
Comparative Effectiveness
Comparative Effectiveness
For stakeholders to make informed decisions about prescription drug use, they need timely evidence about the comparative effectiveness of therapies and their alternatives, including their risks and benefits. Incomplete evidence contributes to overuse of some therapies, underuse of others and risky prescribing. The Center supports innovative research into these topics.
Global Medicines
Global Medicines
Ensuring adequate access and affordability of prescription medicines poses major and unique challenges for countries around the world. These challenges are particularly salient in emerging economies that account for an increasing proportion of the world's population and pharmaceutical expenditures. Center investigators focus on how public policy can be optimized to maximize global drug availability and access.
Medication Safety
Medication Safety
Some adverse effects of medicines only come to light after medications have been on the market and widely used. Center investigators are working to develop new methods for identifying risk, to predict the likelihood of high-risk medicines or drug combinations and to protect the public from excessive exposure to these products.
Policy Analyses
Policy Analyses
Complex and dynamic policies govern prescription drug regulation. Policymakers face the challenge of maximizing innovation while protecting public health, and developing payment policies that promote evidence-based usage. Center investigators evaluate regulatory policies to provide policymakers with information to continually optimize pharmaceutical regulation.
Prescription Abuse
Prescription Abuse
Prescription drugs provide therapeutic value to millions of Americans. At the same time, rates of prescription drug abuse and overdose deaths are skyrocketing. The annual number of fatal drug overdoses in the United States now surpasses those of motor vehicle deaths. The Center supports innovative research and public advocacy to help stem this epidemic.

About Us

Pharmaceuticals play a vital role in the health and longevity of millions, yet many challenges prevent their optimal use. The goal of the Center for Drug Safety and Effectiveness is to improve the safe and effective use of medications.

Drawing on the combined expertise of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of  Public Health and the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, the Center serves as a nexus for individuals at Johns Hopkins who are involved in research, education, clinical programs and public service to improve prescription drug use and pharmaceutical policy in the United States and around the world. The unparalleled knowledge base of the Center’s core faculty reflects a diversity of fields, ranging from pharmacovigilance to regulatory policy.

In addition to its work with trainees and junior faculty and involvement with Johns Hopkins Medicine initiatives, the Center is actively initiating partnerships and collaborations with a variety of other stakeholders vested in addressing core problem areas ranging from prescription drug abuse to barriers to accessible and affordable medicines in developing countries.

The Center was launched in October 2012 and is co-directed by  G. Caleb Alexander, MD, MS and Jodi Segal, MD, MPH, with Kenneth Shermock, PharmD, PhD, Sonal Singh, MD, and Mara McAdams DeMarco, PhD, MS serving as Associate Directors. 

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