True, prospective studies are the gold standard (currently) for answering questions on health interventions. Does this mean that retrospective studies are unnecessary? Not at all. Retrospective studies can answer many health care questions, especially in resource utilization, treatment pathway, optimization, improvement of treatment patterns, cost/benefit and cost /effectiveness analyses.
Before embarking on a prospective time-and-motion study, it is prudent to review the resource utilization in every cost center, thus concentrating efforts primarily in areas that are cost drivers. A retrospective analysis can provide this information. The same holds true for comparing treatment pathways. The most frequently used method for analyzing retrospective data is regression. Since retrospective datasets were originally collected for purposes other than those required for construction of an economic model, the results may be skewed. To correct for this possibility, multiple regression analysis aims to adjust for confounding factors and thus provide objective results. CCHO experts in Biostatistics and Epidemiology are PhD holders and award winning books ensuring robustness in design and analysis of the most complex data.