University of New England - Innovation for a Healthier Planet

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Evidence-Based Practice

Evidence-Based Practice (EBP) utilizes scientific evidence to guide clinical decision-making. EBP involves asking focused clinical questions, and acquiring and evaluating the best available evidence.

What is Evidence-Based Practice?

Evidence-based practice is defined as the “integration of best research evidence with clinical expertise and patient values.” These components allow clinicians to make decisions supported by research and provide individualized patient-centered care.

Sackett DL. Evidence-Based Medicine : How to Practice and Teach Ebm. 2nd ed. Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone; 2000.

The EBP Process

The process begins with the patient and proceeds with the following steps:

Cycle of Evidence-base practice graphic image The 5 A’s of Evidence-based practice Ask Acquire Appraise Apply Assess EBP Process PICO Evidence Pyramid
  1. Ask a clinical question
    Identify the patient need and use a tool such as PICO to ask a focused clinical question. We can help.
  2. Acquire the best available evidence
    Use the evidence pyramid to identify the best study types for your question. Search databases to find the best relevant evidence. We can help.
  3. Appraise the evidence
    Critically evaluate the quality, validity and relevance of the evidence found.
  4. Apply the evidence in practice
    Combine the evidence with your clinical expertise and the patient’s values and preferences.
  5. Assess the outcome
    Monitor and evaluate to determine the effectiveness of the intervention

Questions & Help

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