An article in the Sacramento Bee (15 April 1998, pp. A1, A12), titled “ Drug re actions a top killer, research finds,” reported a study estimating that between 76,000 and 137,000 deaths a year in the United States occur due to adverse re actions to medications. Here are two quotes from the article:
The scientists reached their conclusion not in one large study but by combining the results of 39 smaller studies. This technique, called meta-analysis, can enable researchers to draw statistically significant conclusions from studies that individually are too small (p. A12).
[A critic of the research] said the estimates in Pomeranz’s study might be high, because the figures came from large teaching hospitals with the sickest patients, where more drug use and higher rates of drug reactions would be expected than in smaller hospitals ( p. A12).
a. Pick one of the benefits in Section 25.3 and one of the criticisms in Section 25.4, and apply them to this study.
b. The study estimated that between 76,000 and 137,000 deaths a year occur due to adverse reactions to medications, with a mean estimate of 100,000. If this is true, then adverse drug reaction is the fourth- leading cause of death in the United States. Based on these results, which one of the criticisms given in Section 25.4 is definitely not a problem? Explain.

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