The Doctor Is In: Government-sponsored medical research will help cut health care costs

The $787 billion economic stimulus bill signed by President Obama this week includes more than $140 billion in health care spending. $1.1 billion of that sum will fund medical research comparing the effectiveness of various treatments and drugs.

This type of research is sorely needed to provide physicians with better information so they'll have a clearer idea if a more costly treatment is actually more effective than cheaper alternatives. It will also help control spiraling health care costs by preventing the health care system and patients from spending money on unproven technology and drugs.