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Searching for the Evidence

Seventy-Five Trials and Eleven Systematic Reviews a Day: How Will We Ever Keep Up?

Netting the Evidence
The latest incarnation of this site uses a customized Google search to locate online materials related to the methodology of evidence-based practice, including searching.

McMaster University Tips for Searching the Evidence

Search Hedges
From McMaster University, sets of search terms designed to retrieve particular types of studies from literature databases (Medline, PsycInfo, CINAHL, EMBASE).

National Network of Libraries of Medicine
Search the directory of members to find a nearby health sciences library with journals, databases, and experts to help you find evidence to support your practices.

Behavioral Medicine Alerts
Keep up with newly published behavioral medicine research with this newsletter from the Cochrane Behavioral Medicine Field.


Sources of Secondary, Synthesized Evidence

Cochrane Collaboration
International organization whose members conduct systematic reviews primarily of treatments. The Cochrane Manual outlines procedures for conducting reviews. The Cochrane Library contains free abstracts of reviews.  Full text is also available by subscription.

NHS Centre for Reviews and Dissemination (CRD)
Freely available source of systematic reviews and technology assessments, including:

Health Services/Technology Assessment Text
Free, searchable online book allows full-text searching of AHRQ Evidence Reports, clinical practice and consumer guidelines, SAMHSA protocols, Surgeon General’s Reports and Statements from the NIH Consensus Development program.  (These reports can also be found through individual agency websites).  Sponsored by the National Library of Medicine. 

EPC Evidence Reports
Systematic reviews commissioned by the Association for Health Research and Quality (AHRQ) and conducted by the Evidence-Based Practice Centers. 

The Community Guide (CDC)
Free resource.  U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) works with partners to conduct systematic reviews of the effectiveness of community, environmental, population, and healthcare system interventions in public health and health promotion. These systematic reviews form the basis of recommendations for public health practice, policy, and research that are made by the Task Force on Community Preventive Services. 

A free, searchable registry of systematic reviews on the effectiveness of public health and health promotion interventions. Funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research to support decision-makers

Campbell Collaboration
International organization whose members conduct systematic reviews on social, educational and criminal justice topics.

OT Seeker
Database of abstracts of systematic reviews and RCTs relevant to occupational therapy.

Medion Database
Free database of systematic reviews of diagnostic tests and genetic tests.  Produced and updated by researchers at the Universities of Maasticht, Netherlands. 

Practical, current, easily accessible information on clinical topics to help clinicians care for patients.  Requires subscription.

Free website giving simple bullet points about treatments that work (and that don’t work).  Information comes from systematic reviews, meta-analyses, randomized trials, and from high quality observational studies culled from monthly searching of PubMed and the Cochrane Library. 

ACP Medicine
Online internal medicine textbook updated every month. Audience is practicing physicians. Requires a subscription. 

MD Consult
Online database providing access to journals, textbooks, and patient handouts. Also available is Nursing Consult. Requires a subscription, which may be available through your local health sciences library.

Each Daily InfoPOEM provides a critical appraisal and clinical bottom line of a recently-published research study. Paid subscription includes daily emails as well as access to a database of POEMs, practice guidelines, abstracts of Cochrane reviews, and other health information. Primary audience is physicians.

ACP Pier
American College of Physicians resource for physician information and education.  Lists evidence ratings and criteria.  Gives recommendations, rationale, and evidence ratings based upon recent research.  Includes coverage of some behavioral interventions, e.g., smoking cessation, depression treatment. Requires a subscription, but available through some health sciences libraries.

Database of Uncertainties of Effectiveness of Treatment (DUET)
If you can’t find up-to-date, synthesized research on your topic, submit your question to DUET, a project to prioritize research needs.


Resources to locate primary research literature

A free search interface for the MEDLINE database, made available by National Library of Medicine. Covers major biomedical and health sciences journals since 1966. No charge to search for article citations and abstracts; has paid links to current full-text electronic journals. Additional links to full-text may be available through some health sciences libraries

Covers psychological literature from the 1800s to present. Search results include citations and abstracts for journal articles, book chapters, and dissertations. Requires a subscription, but is available at many health and social sciences libraries.

Includes article citations and abstracts from major journals since 1982 in the areas of nursing, occupational therapy, physical therapy, respiratory technology, x-ray technology, and other allied health fields.  Requires a subscription, but is available at many health sciences libraries.

Contains citations (and abstracts, when available) for biomedical and health sciences journals since 1988. Some overlap with Medline but also contains unique content. Especially useful for finding journal literature from outside North America. Requires a subscription, but may be available through some large academic health sciences libraries.

TRIP (Turning Research Into Practice)
Free database that searches sources of systematic reviews and practice guidelines, as well as primary literature. Some search results may require a subscription to access full text.

SUM Search
Searches sources of health information on the Internet.

PEDro: The Physiotherapy Evidence Database

EBM Search: Primary Care Electronic Library
Searches a number of sources of health information, including: Bandolier, Clinical Evidence, Cochrane, and others.

BMJ Evidence-Based Mental Health
Journal publishing evidence on mental health topics.  


Practice guidelines and Empirically Supported Practices

National Guideline Clearinghouse

Empirically Supported Treatments (1998 Update to list)

SAMHSA National Registry of Evidence-Based Programs and Practices

National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE)
NICE produces guidelines—on public health, health technologies, interventional procedures, and clinical practice—in support of the health care system in the United Kingdom.

Cancer Control P.L.A.N.E.T
This portal provides access to Web-based resources that can assist in assessing cancer risk, identifying partner organizations, accessing evidence-based programs and products, and finding guidelines for planning and evaluation. 

Research-Tested Intervention Programps (RTIPs)
Find evidence-based programs and download materials. Includes programs from National Cancer Institute (NCI), Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Topic covered include: tobacco control, physical activity, sun safety, breast, cervical, and colorectal cancer screening, informed dicision making for cancer screening, 5 A Day and diet.

U.S. Preventive Service Task Force, Guide to Clinidcal Preventive Services (AHRQ)
Contains USPSTF recommendations on screening, counseling, and other clinical regimens.

USPHS Guideline on Treating tobacco use and dependence

Community Guide
Evidence-based community and policy recommendations from the CDC. See description aboave section, Sources of Secondary, Synthesized Evidence.

Treatments that Work
Companion website for the Oxford University Press series of treatment manuals for empirically-based psychotherapies. Additional tools to accompany manuals are available for download.

California Evidence-Based Clearinghouse for Child Welfare

The CEBC helps to identify and disseminate information regarding evidence-based practices relevant to child welfare. Search for programs that have been reviewed and assigned a scientific rating of effectiveness.



Overview of Evidence-Based Practice  
Asking Questions  
Searching for Evidence  
Critical Appraisal  
Evaluation and Dissemination  

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