How to find the evidence
Do you need the best evidence for use in patient care? If you are generally familiar with the disease process affecting your patient, but are not an expert in current care recommendations, experts recommend that you begin by using resources that review, grade, and summarize available evidence.
If these sources don’t provide current information or don't provide the general overview you need, go on to read information available through peer-reviewed, frequently updated resources or recent, review articles in medical journals. These resources may not comment on the quality of the evidence supporting their statements but are, at least, relatively current. If you find that you need more background information, you may wish to review the more dated information available through standard textbooks.
You can then go on to research more specific questions or the latest findings on a topic by searching the journal literature, grading the evidence you acquire and determining the significance of this evidence yourself.
In the end, you must always make decisions about the importance of the evidence in your patient’s case. Your experience and the patient’s preferences must be taken into account.
This guide will provide the following information:
- Resources available through the library, along with their evidence characteristics
- How to evaluate the evidence
- How to keep up with the evidence
- Where to learn more about the EBM process