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Physician Assistant Program: EBM Resources

What is Evidence-Based Medicine?

EBM (Evidence-Based Medicine) is the integration of clinical expertise, patient values, and the best research evidence into the decision making process for patient care. Clinical expertise refers to the clinician’s cumulated experience, education and clinical skills. The patient brings to the encounter his or her own personal preferences and unique concerns, expectations, and values. The best research evidence is usually found in clinically relevant research that has been conducted using sound methodology. (Sackett D, 2002)

The Process

Evidence-Based Practice requires new skills of the clinician, including efficient literature searching, and the application of formal rules of evidence in evaluating the clinical literature.

ASSESS the patient: Start with the patient and consider the clinical issue/question arising during care

ASK the question: Construct a well built clinical question derived from the issue/question

ACQUIRE the evidence: Select the appropriate resource(s) & conduct a search

APPRAISE the evidence:  Appraise the evidence for its validity (closeness to the truth) & applicability (usefulness in clinical practice)

APPLY talk with the patient: Integrate that evidence with your clinical expertise & patient preferences and apply it to practice

EVALUATION: Evaluate your performance with this patient

Formulating Questions Using PICO

A well-built clinical question is directly relevant to patient care and helps guide searching for evidence-based answers. There are generally four components of a good clinical question and they are represented by the acronym PICO.

P - Patient, population or problem of interest

I - Intervention - therapy, prognostic factor, or exposure

C - Comparison intervention, if relevant

O - Outcome(s) of interest

PICO worksheet

Pre-Appraised EBM Resources

Find Original Research Articles