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Health Informatics in Clinical Practice

Link with Evidence Based Medicine

Evidence Based Medicine and Health Informatics

Evidence based medicine is widely accepted as the best way to deliver effective health care.

However, the challenge remains in "generating structured answerable clinical questions" and the "capability to find the information needed" to answer these questions at the patient's bedside.

EBM in the Real World

The five steps involved in practising evidence based medicine are:

1. Recognise the need for information and generate structured answerable questions

2. Search for the evidence to answer the questions

3. Critically appraise the found evidence for relevance and validity

4. Tailor the evidence to the needs and preference of the individual patient

5. Audit and review one's own practise

Of the five steps, steps two and three are the most time and effort consuming.

From the "hierarchy of clinical information" section, it will be clear that performing these steps would not be feasible in the real world setting at the point of care unless one uses tertiary sources of information.

However, even then, a rapid critical appraisal of the evidence found should still be performed on the evidence found. A rapid assessment tool for this will be proposed in the "critical appraisal made easy" section.

It should also become clear that the more " useful" the information, the more the user has to " trust" the source of the information.

This is where accreditation by recognised medical bodies and peer-review by practising clinicians are of utmost importance.

 

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Page Updated: 17 May, 2017

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