It was supposed to be the greatest thing since sliced bread: the first new oral anticoagulant in 50 years that did not require INR testing in the majority of patients. It's time to effective anticoagulation was measured in hours instead of days. There were even some data that suggested a possible propensity to lower intracranial bleeding rates compared its older counterpart, warfarin.
But the world changed for dabigatran (marketed by Boehringer-Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals as Pradaxa®) yesterday. That was the day the new proposed rule for structuring Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) was proposed by CMS and published online with its addendum of 65 quality measures.
Sadly, dabigatran (and probably most of the other direct thrombin inhibitors being developed) will no longer represent "quality care" for patients with heart failure and atrial fibrillation.
Yep, it's right there, measure 51.
Well, only the most credulous among us ever believed in the first place that the Central Arbiters of health care and the adjudicators of comparative effectiveness were going to promote quality. Please read the post by Dr. Wes in its blistering entirety.