Cochrane News

Subscribe to Cochrane News feed
Updated: 10 hours 58 min ago

2016 Impact Factor for Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews is 6.124

Wed, 06/14/2017 - 11:13

The 2016 Journal Citation Report (JCR) has just been released by Clarivate Analytics (formerly Thomson ISI), and we are pleased to announce that Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews (CDSR) Impact Factor is now 6.124.

This is a slight increase on the 2015 impact factor, which was 6.103.

The CDSR impact factor is calculated by taking the total number of citations in a given year to all Cochrane Reviews published in the past 2 years, and dividing that number by the total number of Reviews published in the past 2 years. It is a useful metric for measuring the strength of a journal by how often it its publications are cited in scholarly articles.

Some highlights of the CDSR 2016 Impact Factor include:

  • The CDSR is ranked 14 of the 154 journals in the Medicine, General & Internal category.
  • The CDSR received 57,740 cites in the 2016 Impact Factor period, compared with 47,899 for the 2015 Impact Factor calculation.
  • The total number of times the CDSR was cited increased from 47,899 in 2015 to 57,740 in 2015 meaning the CDSR received the 5th highest number of citations in its category.
  • The 5-Year Impact Factor is 7.018.

The main Impact Factor report and the CRG reports will be delivered after the JCR is updated in September. This is because, as has happened in previous years, Clarivate was unable to accurately index Cochrane Reviews for this Impact Factor window; Wiley and Cochrane are following-up with Clarivate regarding the calculation of the 2016 impact factor. 

More information is available here on how the CDSR Impact Factor is calculated.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Former South African Minister of Finance will open the Global Evidence Summit

Tue, 06/13/2017 - 19:12
“This generation, our generation of people who benefited, must always be the pioneers who look to younger people and say mediocrity is not accommodated in what we do.” 

Trevor Manuel, who served in the South African government as Minister of Finance from 1996 to 2009, during the presidencies of Nelson Mandela, Thabo Mbeki, Kgalema Motlanthe, and subsequently as Minister in the Presidency under President Jacob Zuma, will be the first plenary speaker at the Global Evidence Summit.

Trevor Manuel will address the Summit in the opening Plenary on Wednesday 13 September, 9am-10.30am.

During his two decades as a Cabinet Minister, Trevor Manuel also served as a Member of Parliament, representing the African National Congress.

His career highlights include major social and economic developments within the South African economy. As Minister of Trade and Industry, he led the process of reintegrating South Africa into the global economy after decades of sanctions and disinvestment. He introduced extensive support measures for small, medium and micro-enterprises to boost local economic development and grow business enterprise.

As Chairperson of the National Planning Commission, he also oversaw the drafting of the broadly-accepted and first National Development Plan for the country.

Mr Manual has held leadership positions within a several international bodies, including the United Nations Commission for Trade and Development (UNCTAD), the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the G20, the African Development Bank and the Southern African Development Community.

He has been internationally recognized for his accomplishments within social and economic development, and holds eight honorary doctorates from South African tertiary institutions in a range of disciplines including Commerce, Law and Technology as well as a Doctor of Laws from McMaster University, Ontario Canada.

Currently, he is an Honorary Professor in the School of Development Policy & Practice at the University of Cape Town where he is also a Senior Political Fellow, and Professor Extraordinaire at the University of Johannesburg.

Find out more about all our plenary speakers here.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Welcome Cochrane Iran - the gold standard in high quality, trusted health information

Wed, 06/07/2017 - 21:05

Cochrane, a global independent network of researchers, professionals, patients, carers and people interested in health, is proud to announce its newest Associate Centre, Cochrane Iran.

The Cochrane Iran Associate Centre is located in the city of Tehran, within the National Institute for Medical Research Development (NIMAD) of the Islamic Republic of Iran. NIMAD is a national public granting body for medical research, which is under supervision of Ministry of Health and Medical Education (MoHME) of Iran.

Cochrane Iran will promote evidence-based decision making in health care across Iran by supporting and training new authors of Cochrane Reviews, as well as working with clinicians, professional associations, policy-makers, patients, and the media to encourage the dissemination and use of Cochrane evidence.

Professor Hassan Hashemi, the Iranian Minister of Health and Medical Education, who gave an inaugural speech at the launch of 'Cochrane Iran Associate Centre' says it is a great opportunity for Iranian researchers to have more direct contributions in order to produce and disseminate Cochrane knowledge: "I believe that this centre will be a cornerstone to advocate evidence-informed practice in Iran, in the region and beyond, given that thousands of young talented Iranian scientists are always present and being generated across the country. This formal Cochrane presence in IR Iran will help spread the messages of the Cochrane Collaboration.”

Professor Reza Malekzadeh, Vice Chancellor for Research and Technology at MoHME and Director of NIMAD says, “We are very proud of having a Cochrane Centre in Iran. We now have the opportunity to make Cochrane evidence accessible and useful to Iranian.  This center will certainly become the leading advocate for evidence-informed health care in Iran.”

Cochrane works with collaborators from more than 130 countries to produce credible, accessible health information that is free from commercial sponsorship and other conflicts of interest.  Cochrane’s work is recognized as representing an international gold standard for high quality, trusted information.
Cochrane Iran will be co-ordinated and led by its new Associate Centre Director, Professor Ali-Akbar Haghdoost and Co-Director Dr. Bita Mesgarpour, who will offer methodological support, mentoring, and supervision. Professor Ali-Akbar Haghdoost says this is a hugely exciting opportunity, “The launch of Cochrane Iran is very important, both to Iran and its neighbouring regions. Producing and increasing the dissemination of the best available information on health care is critical for clinicians and patients everywhere in the world, including Iran.”

Cochrane’s CEO Mark Wilson, welcomed today’s news, “I am delighted we are announcing the launch of Cochrane Iran, which will deepen and expand the scope, reach, and impact of Cochrane activities in Iran. I’m grateful for the outstanding support from NIMAD for this new Associate Centre, which brings together both those who have been involved in Cochrane activities for many years with new collaborators across the country. Iran is a regional leader in scientific research; and I’m sure that Cochrane Iran will help Iranian researchers, clinicians and policy makers to produce and use synthesized evidence which is so important for effective outcomes in health decision-making.”

--END--

For further information about Cochrane Iran, please contact:
Dr. Bita Mesgarpour
Co-Director of Cochrane Iran
M +98(21)66900920  info@cochrane.ir

 For more infromation about Cochrane, please contact:
Jo Anthony
Senior Media and Communications Manager, Cochrane 
M +44(0) 7582 726 634 janthony@cochrane.org or pressoffice@cochrane.org

If you are a journalist or member of the press and wish to receive news alerts before their online publication or if you wish to arrange an interview with an author, please contact the Cochrane press office: pressoffice@cochrane.org

Friday, June 9, 2017

Cochrane seeks Senior Contracts Specialist - London, UK

Wed, 06/07/2017 - 18:56

Specifications: Part Time/ 3 days pw
Salary: Competitive
Location: London
Application Closing Date: 7 July 2017

This role is an exciting opportunity to use your experience in contract management to make a difference in the field of health care research. 

As the organisation’s sole manager for contracts, the Senior Contracts Specialist will take the leading role in the implementation and maintenance of an effective contracts service for a portfolio with a range of complexity and requirements. They will provide operational contract management, developing solutions which reduce legal liability and risk and provide optimal terms for Cochrane.

We are looking for a self-motivated and highly organised individual who is able to work effectively and collaboratively with a diverse range of contacts across the world.  The successful candidate will also have:

  • Higher education to degree level, or equivalent, or substantial relevant experience.
  • Experience of contracts management within the Higher Education, health research, charity, and/or publishing sectors.
  • Knowledge of contract and intellectual property laws (particularly related to the UK).
  • Experience, ability and mindset to work as the sole contracts manager for the organisation.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills in English.
  • Proven ability to understand, interpret, apply and develop policies and procedures.
  • Ability to quickly gain an understanding of Cochrane’s operational context, activities and arrangements with contractual partners and apply these to delivery.
  • The ability to use judgement, initiative and creativity to identify and solve complex problems.
  • Excellent organisational and planning skills including proven ability to organise and prioritise workload, work efficiently and meet tight deadlines.                                                                                                                                                                                        

Cochrane is a global, independent network of health practitioners, researchers, patient advocates and others, responding to the challenge of making vast amounts of research evidence useful for informing decisions about health. We do this by synthesizing research findings to produce the best available evidence on what can work, what might harm and where more research is needed. Our work is recognised as the international gold standard for high quality, trusted information.

If you would like to apply for this position, please send a CV along with a supporting statement to recruitment@cochrane.org with Senior Contracts Specialist in the subject line.  The supporting statement should indicate why you are applying for the post, and how far you meet the requirements for the post outlined in the job description using specific examples.  List your experience, achievements, knowledge, personal qualities, and skills which you feel are relevant to the post.

For further information, please download the full job description.

Deadline for applications: 12 midnight GMT, 7 July 2017

Wednesday, June 7, 2017 Category: Jobs

Cochrane Croatia recognized for success in promoting best available health information

Wed, 06/07/2017 - 18:24

Cochrane is delighted to announce that Cochrane Croatia has been recognized for its outstanding achievements in promoting evidence-based decision-making in health care by being awarded full, independent Centre status.

The Centre consists of longstanding, dedicated Cochrane enthusiasts located at the University of Split School of Medicine, where it is part of the Croatian Centre for Global Health.

Cochrane Croatia will continue to promote evidence-based decision making in health care in Croatia and the region by supporting and training new authors of Cochrane Reviews, as well as working with clinicians, professional associations, policy-makers, patients, and the media to encourage the dissemination and use of Cochrane evidence.

Cochrane Croatia has been part of Cochrane since 2008 when it was established as a Branch of the Italian Cochrane Centre. Cochrane is a global independent network of researchers, professionals, patients, carers, and people interested in health. Cochrane works with collaborators from more than 130 countries to produce credible, accessible health information that is free from commercial sponsorship and other conflicts of interest.  Cochrane’s work is recognized as representing an international gold standard for high-quality, trusted information.

Cochrane Croatia will be co-ordinated and led by Drs Irena Zakarija-Grković and Tina Poklepović Peričić, who, together with their team, will offer methodological support, mentoring, and supervision to Cochrane members from the whole region.

Co- Director of Cochrane Croatia, Dr Irena Zakarija-Grković, says this is a hugely exciting opportunity: “The launch of Cochrane Croatia as a full Centre is very important, to Croatia, Europe and globally. Producing and increasing the dissemination of the best available information on health care is critical for clinicians and patients everywhere in the world, including in South-Eastern Europe.”

Cochrane’s CEO Mark Wilson, welcomed today’s news, “I am delighted we are announcing the launch of Cochrane Croatia as a full Centre, the highest recognition of a Cochrane Group. Cochrane Croatia is one of the most energetic within the Cochrane world. Their impact in dissemination, knowledge transfer, combined with their continued development of Cochrane authors has been outstanding. Thanks to the growing base of our collaborators from the University of Split, we’re delighted to recognize the achievements of Cochrane Croatia, and now welcome them as  one of 17 Cochrane Centres internationally, committed to the fullest range of Cochrane activities.”  

He added, “The work of Dr Irena Zakarija-Grković and her team will deepen and expand the scope, reach, and impact of Cochrane activities on health and healthcare decision making not only in Croatia but throughout the region. There are already groups in neighbouring Bosnia and Herzegovina inspired by the work of Cochrane Croatia and looking to join Cochrane. Cochrane Croatia will promote recognition of studies conducted and published in Croatia and the region, and this will not only increase the access of evidence, but also promote sharing of clinical experiences across the country, and the world, especially given Cochrane Croatia’s active role in the translation of Cochrane evidence.”

 “This is an excellent opportunity for scientific growth and gives us the chance to train students and a future generation that will develop high-quality research. Our chance to support health professionals in improving their decision making based on the best available evidence will support patient care.” Tina Poklepović Peričić, Cochrane Croatia’s Co-Director, concluded, “This is an innovation for our region and we intend to collaborate in the dissemination of Cochrane Reviews and to continue supporting Cochrane to reach its 2020 strategic objectives.”

For more information on the work of Cochrane Croatia, please visit the Centre's website.

--END--

For further information, please contact:

Jo Anthony
Senior Media and Communications Manager, Cochrane
M
+44(0) 7582 726 634 janthony@cochrane.org or pressoffice@cochrane.org

About Cochrane
Cochrane is a global independent network of researchers, professionals, patients, carers and people interested in health.

Cochrane produces reviews which study all of the best available evidence generated through research and make it easier to inform decisions about health. These are called systematic reviews.

Cochrane is a not-for-profit organization with collaborators from more than 130 countries working together to produce credible, accessible health information that is free from commercial sponsorship and other conflicts of interest. Our work is recognized as representing an international gold standard for high-quality, trusted information.

Find out more at cochrane.org

Follow us on twitter @cochranecollab

If you are a journalist or member of the press and wish to receive news alerts before their online publication or if you wish to arrange an interview with an author, please contact the Cochrane press office: pressoffice@cochrane.org

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Cochrane Brazil Director receives award from Brazilian government

Tue, 06/06/2017 - 20:12

Professor Álvaro Atallah, founding Director of Cochrane Brazil, has received the Medal of the Order of Merit from the Public Ministry of the Federal District and Territories (MPDFT). Professor Atallah is head of the Evidence-Based Medicine and Emergency Medicine Unit at the Federal University of São Paulo (Unifesp). The Order is awarded every two years in recognition of exemplary service for the benefit of society.

Please join us in congratulating Professor Atallah and Cochrane Brazil on receiving this honour.

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Vivli seeks Executive Director - Cambridge, MA

Mon, 06/05/2017 - 12:49

Vivli, the Center for Global Clinical Research Data, is seeking an Executive Director.

The Vivli Executive Director (ED) is the key management and operations leader of Vivli, Inc. The Executive
Director position reports directly to the Board of Directors and will work with the Board to execute the
organization’s strategic mission and vision. The ED has overall strategic and operational responsibility for the
administration, programs, staff, alliances and plan for the organization. Key duties include strategic direction
and oversight, fundraising, marketing and advocacy for the organization’s mission.

For more information on the position and how to apply, please see the full job posting.

Monday, June 5, 2017 Category: Jobs

Find out why you should come to Global Evidence Summit 2017

Mon, 06/05/2017 - 01:40
Participants will enjoy:Plenaries where you can…
  • Understand how evidence can achieve a more equitable world. Hear from speakers such as Sipho Mthathi from Oxfam South Africa and John-Arne Røttingen, from the Research Council of Norway who will be sharing their real-life experiences of how international collaboration and innovation can solve humanitarian crises.
  • Learn how a digital and trustworthy evidence ecosystem is leading the way for guideline development.
  • Find out what key evidence tools are needed for emerging international health and social crises.
  • And be inspired by how the evidence community, working together, can conquer the post-truth world.
Join further debate and discussion in post-plenary sessions, which will include… 
  • How big and diverse data impact on the production of systematic reviews and guideline development.
  • Learning about the integration between evidence-based health care and shared decision-making, and how to solve current global controversies.
  • Improving our understanding of how living guideline recommendations are linked to living systematic reviews.
  • Understanding challenges within the post-truth world, related to providing best current evidence and practice.
Find out more from oral and poster presentations on global themes such as…
  • Real-world evidence
  • Priority setting for evidence tools
  • Guideline development
  • Building capacity for dissemination and implementation
Enjoy South Africa’s cultural highlights…We look forward to seeing you at the first-ever Global Evidence Summit! Monday, June 5, 2017

National one-click access to evidence-based Cochrane Reviews for South Africans

Sat, 06/03/2017 - 17:48

The South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC) aims to improve the quality of health care for South Africans.  The SAMRC’s Cochrane Centre recently procured a national Cochrane Library licence that will make evidence-based scientific reviews accessible to healthcare decision makers in South Africa. 

This collaboration between Wiley and the SAMRC offers free access, through IP recognition, to the Cochrane Library throughout South Africa. This has been made possible by funding from the SAMRC, and will enable all South Africans to access the gold-standard in evidence-based healthcare research. The national licence will commence in June 2017.

“This licence means that healthcare practitioners will have sustained access to reliable and unbiased Cochrane Reviews in order to apply well-informed decisions at the point of care to deliver quality healthcare to patients,” says Cochrane South Africa Director Professor Charles Wiysonge. “We also know that systematic reviews of the evidence, such as those produced by Cochrane, can guide decision makers in the development of policies and clinical practice guidelines.”  

Although some universities and hospitals have had access to the Cochrane Library, by way of institutional subscriptions, most healthcare practitioners are not directly affiliated with these institutions leaving access to the Cochrane Library largely unavailable in clinical settings. Similarly, government technical teams and healthcare workers, responsible for developing and implementing policies and guidelines, have limited access to the Cochrane Library and therefore do not always have easy access to evidence-based information for decision making.

“A national licence for South Africa will ensure that all those looking for reliable, up-to-date evidence on healthcare interventions, would have simple ‘one-click’ access without discrimination,” says SAMRC President, Professor Glenda Gray. “This will be of specific benefit to the many doctors and nurses working under less than ideal circumstances in rural and remote areas of South Africa.”

Cochrane Reviews provide reliable and unbiased evidence through the identification, assessment, synthesis, and dissemination of research findings. The Cochrane Library houses more than 7000 systematic reviews. The national licence in South Africa will provide students, practitioners, researchers, and patients with one-click access to this leading resource in evidence-based research. Subject areas include pregnancy, mental health, cancer, paediatric care, surgical procedures, public health, plus many more.

To date, 506 South African researchers have contributed to Cochrane research.  It is hoped that increased access will also encourage young researchers to engage further with evidence-based research.

Who can access the Library?

All South Africans who need to make a health-related decision will have one-click access.

Who will benefit?

Making a healthcare decision based on best available evidence will benefit anyone who uses the Cochrane Library. This might include civil society, healthcare providers, policy makers, managers and educators, students, and parents.

What is Cochrane evidence and how can it help you?

 

Cochrane Reviews are systematic reviews of primary research in health care and health policy. They investigate the effects of interventions for prevention, treatment, and rehabilitation. They are published online in the Cochrane Library.

A systematic review addresses a clearly formulated question. For example: can antibiotics help in alleviating the symptoms of a sore throat?

To answer this question, we search for and collate all the existing primary research on the topic that meets certain criteria; then we assess it using stringent guidelines, to establish whether or not there is conclusive evidence about a specific treatment.

Cochrane Reviews are peer reviewed, dynamic, and updated regularly. This ensures that treatment decisions can be based on the most up-to-date, reliable evidence.

 About Cochrane South Africa (http://www.mrc.ac.za/cochrane/cochrane.htm)
Cochrane South Africa (CSA), an intramural research unit of the SAMRC, was established in 1997 and is part of The Cochrane Collaboration. The CSA is currently one of 15 Cochrane Centres worldwide and the only Centre in Africa. The Centre’s vision is that healthcare decision-making within Africa will be informed by high-quality, timely, and relevant research evidence.

About Cochrane (www.cochrane.org)
Cochrane is a global independent network of researchers, professionals, patients, carers, and people interested in health.

Cochrane produces reviews which study all of the best available evidence generated through research and make it easier to inform decisions about health. These are called systematic reviews. Cochrane is a not-for-profit organization with collaborators from more than 130 countries working together to produce credible, accessible health information that is free from commercial sponsorship and other conflicts of interest. Our work is recognised as representing an international gold standard for high-quality, trusted information.

The Cochrane Library is published by Wiley.

About Wiley
Wiley, a global company, helps people and organizations develop the skills and knowledge they need to succeed. Our online scientific, technical, medical, and scholarly journals, combined with our digital learning, assessment, and certification solutions help universities, learned societies, businesses, governments, and individuals increase the academic and professional impact of their work. For more than 200 years, we have delivered consistent performance to our stakeholders. The company's website can be accessed at www.wiley.com.

Media enquiries:

Michelle Galloway
Communications Officer
Tel: +27 (0) 84 604 4955
Fax: +27 21 938 0836
E-mail: michelle.galloway@mrc.ac.za

Keletso Ratsela
Media Strategist
Tel: +27 (0) 71 214 5272
Fax: +27 21 938 0676
E-mail: kratsela@mrc.ac.za

Saturday, June 3, 2017

World No Tobacco Day 2017

Wed, 05/31/2017 - 15:43

31 May is World No Tobacco Day. It is organized by the World Health Organization to draw attention to the health risks associated with the use of tobacco and what can still be done to reduce tobacco consumption around the world.

In support of World No Tobacco Day 2017, the Cochrane Library presents an updated Special Collection which highlights a selection of new or recently updated clinically relevant Cochrane Reviews that address tobacco addiction in the general population. There is free access to all reviews included.

Other Cochrane evidence resources for World No Tobacco Day:

Help to quit smoking: Nicotine receptor partial agonists

Psychosocial interventions for supporting women to stop smoking in pregnancy

Tobacco packaging design for reducing tobacco use

Help to quit smoking nicotine replacement therapy (NRT)

Legislative smoking bands: do they benefit health?

Help to quit smoking: E-cigarettes

Help to quit smoking: Motivational interviewing

Help to quit smoking: behavioural support

Helping smokers quit before surgery

Nursing interventions for smoking cessation.

Institutional smoking bans

Mobile phone-based interventions to help people quit smoking.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Cochrane Austria recognized for success in promoting best available health information

Tue, 05/30/2017 - 16:20

Cochrane is delighted to announce that Cochrane Austria has been recognized for its outstanding achievements in promoting evidence-based decision-making in health care by being awarded full, independent Centre status.

Opened in 2010 as a branch of Cochrane, Cochrane Austria consists of longstanding, dedicated Cochrane enthusiasts located in the Department for Evidence-based Medicine and Clinical Epidemiology at the Danube University, Krems.

Cochrane Austria will continue to promote evidence-based decision making in health care in Austria and the region by supporting and training new authors of Cochrane Reviews, as well as working with clinicians, professional associations, policy-makers, patients, and the media to encourage the dissemination and use of Cochrane evidence.

Cochrane is a global independent network of researchers, professionals, patients, carers and people interested in health. Cochrane works with collaborators from more than 130 countries to produce credible, accessible health information that is free from commercial sponsorship and other conflicts of interest.  Cochrane’s work is recognized as representing an international gold standard for high quality, trusted information.

Cochrane Austria, situated at the Danube University Krems, will be co-ordinated and led by Director, Prof. Gerald Garlehner and Associate Director, Barbara Nussbaumer-Streit, who, together with their team, will offer methodological support, mentoring, and supervision to Cochrane members from the whole region.

Director, Prof. Gerald Garlehner, says this is a hugely exciting opportunity: “The launch of Cochrane Austria as a full Centre is very important, both to Austria and globally. Producing and increasing the dissemination of the best available information on health care is critical for clinicians and patients everywhere in the world, including Austria. Being awarded full Centre status means that we will now have the opportunity to expand the scope and impact of our Cochrane activities.” He added, “Becoming a Centre is a great honour that acknowledges our achievements of the past, like the successful hosting of the 23rd Cochrane Colloquium in Vienna in 2015.”

Associate Director Barbara Nussbaumer-Streit added, “We are also very proud of our Medizin-Transparent.at project which answers questions about medical claims made by the media in easy to read blog posts. With more than 1.5 million visits per year, it has led to a huge increase in the reach and impact of Cochrane’s profile and work across Austria.”

Cochrane’s CEO Mark Wilson welcomed the news: “I am delighted that we are announcing the launch of Cochrane Austria as a full Centre. The team’s impact in dissemination, knowledge transfer, combined with their continued development of Cochrane authors has been outstanding. Thanks to the growing base of our collaborators from the Danube University in Krems, we’re delighted to recognize the achievements of Cochrane Austria, and now welcome them as one of 17 Cochrane Centres internationally, committed to the fullest range of Cochrane activities.”  

 For more information on the work of Cochrane Austria, please visit http://austria.cochrane.org

--END--

For further information, please contact,

Jo Anthony
Senior Media and Communications Manager, Cochrane
M
+44(0) 7582 726 634 janthony@cochrane.org or pressoffice@cochrane.org

Find out more at Cochrane.org

About Cochrane
Cochrane is a global independent network of researchers, professionals, patients, carers and people interested in health.

Cochrane produces reviews which study all of the best available evidence generated through research and make it easier to inform decisions about health. These are called systematic reviews.

Cochrane is a not-for-profit organization with collaborators from more than 130 countries working together to produce credible, accessible health information that is free from commercial sponsorship and other conflicts of interest. Our work is recognised as representing an international gold standard for high quality, trusted information.

Find out more at cochrane.org

Follow us on twitter @cochranecollab

If you are a journalist or member of the press and wish to receive news alerts before their online publication or if you wish to arrange an interview with an author, please contact the Cochrane press office: pressoffice@cochrane.org

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Cochrane-REWARD prizes for reducing waste: 2017 winners

Mon, 05/29/2017 - 13:48

The first Cochrane-REWARD prizes for reducing waste in research have just been awarded. This year’s winners were the Adding Value in Research programme of the English National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), the Systematic Review Center for animal Experimentation (SYRCLE) in Nijmegen, Netherlands, and the Core Outcome Measures in Effectiveness Trials (COMET) Initiative coordinated in Liverpool, England. The ceremony took place during the 5th World Conference on Research Integrity in Amsterdam on May 30th. The prize, of GBP 2500, recognizes local or pilot initiatives that could lead to reductions in research waste. Given the high standard of the 18 applicants, the panel decided to award three prizes this year, with SYRCLE and COMET being awarded a joint second prize.

NIHR’s Adding Value in Research programme aims to ensure that research funded by the NIHR addresses questions that are relevant to clinicians, patients and the public; uses appropriate design and methods; is delivered efficiently; results in accessible full publication; and produces unbiased and useable reports. It therefore matches the key goals of the REWARD campaign in tackling waste at every stage of research. Examples of activities promoted by the programme include requiring funding applications for primary research to reference systematic reviews showing what is already known on a topic; ensuring NIHR-funded research is fully reported; and involving patients not only on funding committees but also in monitoring trials.

SYRCLE undertakes teaching, coaching and research about systematic reviews of animal studies. These activities are designed to improve the reliability of laboratory animal research and its relevance for patients. Systematic reviews help to make existing evidence more transparent, prevent duplication, and identify knowledge gaps. Since commencing the systematic reviews of animal studies, Radboud University has seen a 35% drop in animals used, and the Netherlands 15% lower. Started in the Netherlands, SYRCLE is building a global network of ambassadors to promote its work.

The COMET Initiative brings together people interested in the development and application of agreed standardised sets of research outcomes, known as ‘core outcome sets’, relevant to health service users and clinicians. These outcome sets represent the minimum that should be measured and reported in all clinical trials of treatments for a specific condition, and can also be used in clinical audits. Use of COMET’s core outcome sets facilitates comparability of trials and use in systematic reviews. Importantly COMET has two current initiatives: (i) a funder (NIHR) requests trial applications check and refer to COMET, and (ii) with a trials registry (ISRCTN) to provide advice at the time of registration.

The Cochrane-REWARD Prize will be awarded again in 2018. Details for applicants for the 2018 prize will be announced late 2017.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Feature Review: Decision aids to help people who are facing health treatment or screening decisions

Thu, 05/25/2017 - 19:44

Growing evidence to support the use of patient decision aids

Deciding on the best treatment or screening option can be hard. People can use decision aids when there is more than one option and neither is clearly better or when options have benefits and harms that people value differently. Decision aids may be pamphlets, videos, or web-based tools. They state the decision, describe the options, and help people think about the options from a personal view (e.g. how important are possible benefits and harms).

A team of Cochrane authors based in Canada, Australia, United Kingdom, and the United States worked with Cochrane Consumers and Communication to investigate the effects of decision aids on people facing health treatment or screening decisions. 18 new studies were added to a previous version of this review, bringing the total to 105 studies, involving 31,043 people. The decision aids focused on 50 different decisions; 89 studies evaluated a patient decision aid used by people in preparation for the visit with the clinician, and 16 studies evaluated its use during the visit with the clinician.

Compared to usual care across a wide variety of decision contexts, people exposed to decision aids feel more knowledgeable, better informed, and clearer about their values, and they probably have a more active role in decision making and more accurate risk perceptions. There is growing evidence that decision aids may improve values-congruent choices. There are no adverse effects on health outcomes or satisfaction. New for this update is evidence indicating improved knowledge and accurate risk perceptions when decision aids are used either within or in preparation for the consultation. Further research is needed on the effects on adherence with the chosen option, cost-effectiveness, and use with lower literacy populations.

The original review was published in 2001 and it was last updated in 2014. “Updating this Review was important because there have been health policy changes in several countries since 2010 that require shared decision making and better patient engagement in health decisions. For example, the 2014 NICE Guidelines for Patient Experience recommend the use of high-quality patient decision aids for adults facing treatment or screening decisions and reference this Review,” says Dr Dawn Stacey, the lead author of the Cochrane Review. “We added 18 new studies to this update. This brought our total to 105 included studies and we had enough trials to conduct a sub-analysis that compared outcomes for patient decision aids used in preparation for the consultation versus in the consultation. Our findings showed that patient decision aids improve knowledge and realistic expectations without any difference between timing in their use.”

“A project stemming from this Cochrane Review is hosting the international inventory of patient decision aids rated against the International Patent Decision Aids Standards (IPDAS) criteria. We originally presented this information as a table in the Cochrane Review but we moved the inventory to a website so that it is accessible to the public and searchable,” added Dr. Stacey. “It’s a great resource for patients, caregivers, clinicians, and policy makers. Given the evidence supporting use of decision aids, we hope that they will be more widely used in clinical practice.”

 

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Cochrane Japan gets independent Centre status – one of only two full centres in Asia-Pacific

Wed, 05/24/2017 - 18:35

Cochrane Japan has been recognized for its outstanding achievements in promoting evidence-based decision-making in health care by moving from a Cochrane Associate Centre to being awarded full, independent Centre status – one of only two full Centres in Asia-Pacific. 

The Centre consists of longstanding, dedicated Cochrane enthusiasts located at the National Centre for Child Health and Development (NCCHD) in Tokyo, Japan.

Cochrane Japan, part of Cochrane since 2014, will continue to promote evidence-based decision making in health care in Japan by supporting and training new authors of Cochrane Reviews, as well as working with clinicians, professional associations, policy-makers, patients, and the media to encourage the dissemination and use of Cochrane evidence.

 

Cochrane is a global independent network of researchers, professionals, patients, carers and people interested in health. Cochrane works with collaborators from more than 130 countries to produce credible, accessible health information that is free from commercial sponsorship and other conflicts of interest, and our evidence is recognized as representing an international gold standard for high-quality, trusted information.

Cochrane Japan’s Director Rintaro Mori says this is a hugely exciting opportunity: “The launch of Cochrane Japan as a full Centre is very important, both to Japan and globally. Japan is the world’s third-biggest economy with most developed healthcare sectors. The Centre has been recognized for its promotion of Cochrane evidence, produced and published in Japan, and this will not only simply increase the amount of evidence, but also promote sharing of clinical experiences across the region. In a time where this are concerns about misinformation on health topics in Japan, we are excited to increase our reach and highlight trusted Cochrane evidence.”

Rintaro Mori added, “This is an excellent opportunity for scientific growth, and gives us the chance to train students and a future generation that will develop high-quality research. Our chance to support health professionals in improving their decision-making based on the best available evidence will support patient care across Japan. We intend to collaborate in the dissemination of Cochrane Reviews and to continue supporting Cochrane to reach its 2020 strategic objectives.”

Cochrane’s CEO Mark Wilson, welcomed today’s news. “I am delighted we are announcing the launch of Cochrane Japan as a full Centre, the highest recognition of a Cochrane group. Cochrane Japan’s impact in dissemination, knowledge transfer, combined with their continued development of Cochrane authors, has been outstanding. Thanks to the growing base of our collaborators, and tremendous support from The National Centre for Child Health and Development (NCCHD) in Tokyo, we’re delighted to recognize these achievements, and now welcome them as one of 17 Cochrane Centres internationally, committed to the fullest range of Cochrane activities. The work of Dr Rintaro Mori and his team will deepen and expand the scope, reach, and impact of Cochrane activities on health and healthcare decision making not only in Japan but throughout Asia.”

For more information on the work of Cochrane Japan, please visit http://japan.cochrane.org/

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Cochrane Response seeks Systematic Reviewer - flexible location

Wed, 05/24/2017 - 14:09

Specifications:  Full Time or Part Time, Permanent
Salary:
Dependant on Experience,
Location:
Flexible location
Application Closing Date:
23 June 2017

Cochrane Response is Cochrane’s evidence consultancy unit, providing a broad range of literature review and evidence synthesis services to international policy makers, guideline developers and research organisations, to support evidence-informed healthcare decision making. We provide tailored evidence synthesis services, responding to commissioners’ needs on a project by project basis. We work closely with Cochrane networks to increase Cochrane’s capacity to respond to requests for commissioned evidence reviews and tailored evidence services.

Cochrane is a global independent network of health practitioners, researchers, patient advocates and others, responding to the challenge of making the vast amounts of evidence generated through research useful for informing decisions about health. We do this by identifying, appraising and synthesizing individual research findings to produce the best available evidence on what can work, what might harm and where more research is needed. The primary results of this work are Cochrane Systematic Reviews, recognised by healthcare professionals, policy makers and patients as the benchmark for high-quality information about the effectiveness of treatment interventions.

This is an exciting opportunity to become part of the systematic review team for Cochrane Response. Reporting to the Systematic Review Manager and team leader you will provide a range of systematic review tasks to support the delivery of commissioned systematic reviews, responding to commissioners’ needs on a project by project basis. Systematic review tasks include protocol development, publication screening, data extraction and risk of bias assessment, meta-analyses, interpretation of results and report writing, and performing GRADE and Summary of Findings.

The Ideal Candidate will have:

  • First degree in related field e.g. medical sciences, biology, statistics and ideally, a higher degree relevant to research area or equivalent qualifications.
  • 4+ years of relevant experience in systematic reviews.
  • Publication of at least one Cochrane Review, with responsibilities in data extraction and assimilation.
  • Ability to exercise independent judgment within generally defined practices and policies that lead to methods or processes for obtaining results.
  • Good organization and planning skills.
  • Strong interpersonal skills and communication skills (both written and oral).
  • Excellent presentation skills.
  • Ability to problem solve and delegate appropriate tasks to subordinates.
  • Able to collaborate effectively with the project team, and experience in working with deadlines.
  • Adaptable and flexible to changing business and customer needs.
  • Proficient IT skills, including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, EndNote and RevMan.
  • Knowledge of CMA, STATA, R, WinBugs or SAS advantageous
  • Able to travel internationally.

The full job description is available here: Job Description

If you would like to apply for this position, please send a CV along with a supporting statement, your interest in a full time or part time position, and your salary expectations to recruitment@cochrane.org with “Systematic Reviewer Cochrane Response” in the subject line.  The supporting statement should indicate why you are applying for the post, and how far you meet the requirements for the post outlined in the job description using specific examples.  List your experience, achievements, knowledge, personal qualities and skills which you feel are relevant to the post.

Deadline for applications: 23 June 2017

Wednesday, May 24, 2017 Category: Jobs

New study finds that health literacy lessons help children make sense of health claims

Wed, 05/24/2017 - 05:12

A group of researchers, including two Cochrane founding members, has designed and run a trial which evaluates an intervention designed to teach primary school children to assess claims about the effects of health treatments. The trial included 10,000 children in more than 120 primary schools in the central region of Uganda, and used a combination comic book and textbook to provide information to students. A linked study targeted parents, testing the effectiveness of a podcast series on their ability to assess health claims.

The Lancet has published a series of articles and media resources about the trial and the results. For complete information, please see the following links:

Press release: THE LANCET: Health literacy lessons help children make sense of health claims, study finds

Effects of the Informed Health Choices primary school intervention on the ability of children in Uganda to assess the reliability of claims about treatment effects: a cluster-randomised controlled trial

Effects of the Informed Health Choices podcast on the ability of parents of primary school children in Uganda to assess claims about treatment effects: a randomised controlled trial

 

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Mosquitoes and malaria: Cochrane is on the case

Tue, 05/23/2017 - 18:10

Reposted with permission from Cochrane Infectious Diseases 

14 Cochrane Reviews used in the World Health Organization Guidelines for the Treatment of Malaria.

Bednets with insecticide in the fabric reduce child deaths by about one-fifth in malaria areas in Africa – that was the key message of the Cochrane Review published in 1998. Since then the Cochrane Infectious Diseases Group (CIDG) malaria portfolio has expanded to over 70 reviews. CIDG authors have assessed the evidence mainly related to malaria chemoprevention and chemotherapy, with 14 Cochrane Reviews used in formulating recommendations in the third edition of the World Health Organization (WHO) Guidelines for the Treatment of Malaria. Now, the WHO wants to use evidence synthesis more extensively in their malaria vector control guidelines, and the CIDG is helping to co-ordinate this effort.

Attendees at the ‘Cochrane Reviews and Guideline Development in Malaria Vector Control’ workshop.

Liverpool was the meeting point in early May 2017 for Cochrane authors, editors, entomologists, and others working on a set of reviews to help inform these guidelines. Participants were able to see how the reviews fitted together and related to the guidelines, helped authors to harmonize the reviews, and provided the opportunity for feedback. Seven Cochrane Reviews on mosquito vector control are currently in progress, with collaborators from the LSTM Department of Vector Biology, the Department of Biosciences in Durham, and researchers in Tanzania and Kenya.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017 Category: Making a Difference

Cochrane welcomes the commitment of funders and international NGOs to implement WHO clinical trial reporting standards

Mon, 05/22/2017 - 00:23

18 May 2017 | Geneva - Some of the world’s largest funders of medical research and international non-governmental organizations have agreed on new standards that will require all clinical trials they fund or support to be registered and the results disclosed publicly.

In a joint statement, the Indian Council of Medical Research, the Norwegian Research Council, the UK Medical Research Council, Médecins Sans Frontières and Epicentre (its research arm), PATH, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), Institut Pasteur, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and the Wellcome Trust agreed to develop and implement policies within the next 12 months that require all trials they fund, co-fund, sponsor or support to be registered in a publicly-available registry. They also agreed that all results would be disclosed within specified timeframes on the registry and/or by publication in a scientific journal.

Today, about 50% of clinical trials go unreported, according to several studies, often because the results are negative. These unreported trial results leave an incomplete and potentially misleading picture of the risks and benefits of vaccines, drugs and medical devices, and can lead to use of suboptimal or even harmful products.

"Research funders are making a strong statement that there will be no more excuses on why some clinical trials remain unreported long after they have completed," said Dr Marie-Paule Kieny, Assistant Director-General for Health Systems and Innovation at the World Health Organization (WHO).

The signatories to the statement also agreed to monitor compliance with registration requirements and to endorse the development of systems to monitor results reporting.

"We need timely clinical trial results to inform clinical care practices as well as make decisions about allocation of resources for future research," said Dr Soumya Swaminathan, Director-General of the Indian Council of Medical Research. "We welcome the agreement of international standards for reporting timeframes that everyone can work towards."

In 2015 WHO published its position on public disclosure of results from clinical trials, which defines timeframes within which results should be reported, and calls for older unpublished trials to be reported. That position builds on the World Medical Association’s Declaration of Helsinki in 2013. Today’s agreement by some of the world’s major research funders and international NGOs will mean the ethical principles described in both statements will now be enforced in thousands of trials every year.

"Requiring summary results of clinical trials to be made freely available through open access registries within 12 months of study completion is good for both science and society," said Dr Jeremy Farrar, Director of the Wellcome Trust. "Not only will this help ensure that these research findings are more discoverable, but it will also reduce reporting biases, which currently favour publication of trials which have a positive outcome. Today’s statement is in line with Wellcome’s broader ambition to make all research outputs which arise from our funding more findable, accessible, and re-usable."

Most of these trials and their results will be accessible via WHO’s International Clinical Trials Registry Platform, a unique global database of clinical trials that compiles data from 17 registries around the world, including the United States of America’s clinicaltrials.gov, the European Union’s Clinical Trials Register, the Chinese and Indian Clinical Trial Registries and many others.

"We fully support this statement and look forward to working towards increasing the availability of results from clinical trials,” said Dr John-Arne Røttingen, Chief Executive of the Research Council of Norway. “The public disclosure of results from clinical trials will improve resource allocation to research in a broad sense, and is also in line with our policies on transparency, and on open access."

“The adoption of the WHO standards by major funders and NGOs sends a clear signal that all results from clinical trials should be publicly available,” said Lisa Bero, Cochrane Board Co-Chair. “We hope that others also will adopt these standards and we look forward to seeing regular progress reports on the implementation of this policy.”

“Cochrane Review authors often struggle to obtain the unpublished results of trials, so this commitment will provide valuable data. Going forward, it will be useful to have detailed standards for results reporting for all trial outcomes to ensure that usable data are available for systematic reviews. Ensuring that clinical trials results are available empowers policy-makers, clinicians, and individuals have the best available information to make informed choices about health and health care.”

As a founding member of AllTrials, we will continue to work to have all clinical trial results publicly available. For more information please see our policy on data access.

Comments from other signatories:

Dr Micaela Serafini, Medical Director, Médecins Sans Frontières
"Timely reporting of all clinical trial results is of upmost importance to MSF allowing fully informed decisions when it comes to health strategies, treatments and diagnostics. We fully support this move towards increased transparency and accountability in clinical research."

Dr Trevor Mundel, President, Global Health, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
"It's a 21st-century best practice – and an essential part of the social contract that underlies medical research – that clinical trial data should be made publicly available less than one year after a clinical trial's completion. We strongly support WHO's effort to establish a global standard for reporting data within this timeframe, which is a practice we require of our grantees as well."

Dr David C. Kaslow, Vice President of Essential Medicines at PATH
"PATH remains deeply committed to the timely public disclosure of clinical trial results to accelerate development of new interventions and to ensure access to and transparency of safety and efficacy data, no matter if positive or negative. Full and consistent implementation of WHO standards on reporting clinical trial results is an important step towards better understanding the risks and benefits of vaccines, drugs, and medical devices, and the optimal use of new interventions."

 

Monday, May 22, 2017

Cochrane launches Cochrane Sweden

Tue, 05/16/2017 - 15:19

Cochrane, a global independent network of researchers, professionals, patients, carers and people interested in health, is proud to announce its newest Associate Centre, Cochrane Sweden.

The new Cochrane Sweden Centre is located in the city of Lund, and is affiliated with the Department of Research & Development / Section for HTA Analysis, Skåne University Hospital, in collaboration with the Faculty of Medicine, Lund University, Lund, Sweden, and with the Nordic Cochrane Centre in Copenhagen.

Cochrane Sweden will promote evidence-based decision making in health care across Sweden by supporting and training new Swedish authors of Cochrane Reviews, as well as working with clinicians, professional associations, policy-makers, patients, and the media to encourage the dissemination and use of Cochrane evidence.

Cochrane works with collaborators from more than 130 countries to produce credible, accessible health information that is free from commercial sponsorship and other conflicts of interest.  Cochrane’s work is recognized as representing an international gold standard for high quality, trusted information.

Cochrane Sweden will be co-ordinated and led by its new Centre Director, Matteo Bruschettini, who will offer methodological support, mentoring, and supervision.

Matteo Bruschettini says this is a hugely exciting opportunity: “The launch of Cochrane Sweden is very important, both to Sweden and globally. Producing and increasing the dissemination of the best available information on health care is critical for clinicians and patients everywhere in the world, including Sweden.”

The Director of the Nordic Cochrane Centre, Prof. Peter Gøtzsche, added, “Sweden has one of the highest productions of randomized clinical trials in the world per million inhabitants, so the establishment of Cochrane Sweden will provide us with an excellent opportunity for scientific growth, and for introducing students and a future generation of doctors to Cochrane methodology. It will also be easier to support patients and health professionals in Sweden in improving their decision-making based on the best available evidence.”

Professor Ingemar Petersson, Head of Research, Skåne University Hospital, concluded, “This is an innovation for our country, and we intend to collaborate in the dissemination of Cochrane Reviews and to continue supporting Cochrane to reach its 2020 strategic objectives.”

Cochrane’s CEO Mark Wilson warmly welcomed today’s news: “I am delighted to announce the launch of Cochrane Sweden. We look forward to welcoming more Swedish collaborators to our worldwide network; and we believe that the new Associate Centre will greatly expand the scope, reach, and impact of Cochrane evidence on health and healthcare decision-making across Sweden. This is important because despite its sophisticated and developed healthcare system, we think that Swedish clinicians, researchers, policy makers, patients and the general public are not using our evidence as they could to improve health outcomes.”


For more information on the work of Cochrane Sweden, please visit http://sweden.cochrane.org/

--END--

For further information, please contact:

Matteo Bruschettini
Director of Cochrane Sweden
M
+46(0) 72 595 1356 matteo.bruschettini@med.lu.se

Jo Anthony
Senior Media and Communications Manager, Cochrane
M
+44(0) 7582 726 634 janthony@cochrane.org or pressoffice@cochrane.org

About Cochrane

Cochrane is a global independent network of researchers, professionals, patients, carers and people interested in health.

Cochrane produces reviews which study all of the best available evidence generated through research and make it easier to inform decisions about health. These are called systematic reviews.

Cochrane is a not-for-profit organization with collaborators from more than 130 countries working together to produce credible, accessible health information that is free from commercial sponsorship and other conflicts of interest. Our work is recognised as representing an international gold standard for high quality, trusted information.

Find out more at cochrane.org
Follow us on twitter @cochranecollab

If you are a journalist or member of the press and wish to receive news alerts before their online publication or if you wish to arrange an interview with an author, please contact the Cochrane press office: pressoffice@cochrane.org


Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Defining Cochrane’s success

Mon, 05/15/2017 - 00:30

2017 sees Cochrane enter its fourth year of Strategy to 2020, which aims to put Cochrane evidence at the heart of health decision-making all over the world.

Cochrane’s Senior Management Team has recently released a document that provides the Governing Board, and the wider Cochrane community, with a definition of success for each of the Strategy to 2020 objectives; an assessment of predicted progress by the end of 2017; and a framework for establishing the work still to be done.

To find out more, please read a recent post on the Cochrane Community Blog which includes an interview with our CEO Mark Wilson and a link to our definitions of success document.

Defining Cochrane’s success - an interview with our CEO

 

Monday, May 15, 2017

Pages