Evidence-Based Health Care
The EBHC course is designed to help students develop an attitude of inquiry about their own practice or work environment which will lead them to examine the health care literature for possible answers. The course will teach students to critically appraise the health care literature to decide whether the study findings should guide changes in practice/management/policy. The students will learn strategies to implement and evaluate the recommended changes and teach literature searching and critical appraisal skills to students and practitioners. This course will provide the students with the skills to improve health care practice through the use of best research evidence.
This course will address the following objectives:
- To define EBHC and to learn its impact and limitations on professional education and patient/client care.
- To learn the individual and organizational barriers to EBHC.
- To formulate answerable clinical/management/education/policy questions.
- To conduct efficient and productive searches that identify the best information to answer the question.
- To critically appraise the evidence related to primary studies of health care interventions, systematic reviews, qualitative research, prognosis, harm, clinical practice guidelines, quality of care, and quality of life.
To apply findings to health care decision-making.
To introduce strategies to facilitate EBHC in health care/policy settings.
Method of Presentation
The course will be taught in small groups using problem-based learning through face-to-face interactions. On-line discussion will supplement the sessions.
Method of Evaluation
45% For 3 critical appraisal assignments (15% each), one each on critical appraisal of intervention studies, systematic reviews, and qualitative research
For each of the three assignments, an article will be distributed in class the week before the assignment is due; a required worksheet will be completed to document the critical appraisal.
15% Tutorial performance
Students are expected to be active participants in tutorials, whether they are conducted face-to-face or on-line. There will be a formal mid-term and end of term self, peer and tutor evaluations.
40% Final assignment (30% paper / 10% oral presentation)
The final assignment will consist of two components: an oral presentation and a paper. The oral presentation (10%) will be based on the paper (30%).
The paper will address the following:
- identify a question of relevance to practice
- search the literature for articles to address the question (documenting the search process and evaluating the various databases used)
- identify and critically appraise the 3 highest quality studies
- outline a plan to help their colleagues in the work setting determine whether the research findings should be applied; this plan must explain how the barriers to EBHC will be addressed
- identify evaluation criteria to determine whether the plan worked