COVID-19 shines global spotlight on evidence-based healthcare

Evidence-based healthcare day

The global COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted more than ever the need for the best available evidence to inform healthcare policy, practice and decision-making in order to improve health outcomes globally.

Seven of the world’s leading groups in evidence-based healthcare – including the University of Adelaide’s JBI – are launching the inaugural World Evidence-Based Healthcare (EBHC) Day, to be held on 20 October 2020.

“The need and demand for EBHC continues to grow rapidly due to increased availability of digital information, better informed patients, introduction of new technologies, increased healthcare costs, complex adaptive health systems and ageing populations.” Bianca Pilla

The worldwide initiative is aimed at creating awareness of the critical need to advance the use of reliable research evidence that is relevant, actionable and adaptable to address some of the world’s most serious health challenges.

“The COVID-19 pandemic is a prime example of how misinformation can spread rapidly around the world, and this has a real impact on people’s lives and the community more widely,” says Bianca Pilla, Global Relations Manager with JBI at the University of Adelaide and Chair of World Evidence-Based Healthcare Day.

“Many people will also not realise that in clinical research, there is a 17-year research-to-practice gap of implementing clinical research evidence into practice. We need to find ways of reducing that gap, so that the best available research evidence can be used to address some of the world’s most serious health challenges, and improve patient care sooner.

“World Evidence-Based Healthcare Day is an opportunity for collaboration in the ever-evolving sphere of global health. It will provide a platform to discuss and debate the challenges and innovations in improving health outcomes globally, based on evidence-informed approaches to healthcare,” Ms Pilla says.

In 2020, evidence-based healthcare (EBHC) is a worldwide movement with hundreds of organisations and tens of thousands of individuals working tirelessly towards improving the science and practice of EBHC for the same aim: to improve health outcomes.

“The need and demand for EBHC continues to grow rapidly due to increased availability of digital information, better informed patients, introduction of new technologies, increased healthcare costs, complex adaptive health systems and ageing populations,” Ms Pilla says.

“In 2020, the importance of having the ability to utilise the best available evidence has been highlighted by the rapid implementation of effective hand washing and the correct use of PPE to help fight the spread of COVID-19.

“Around the world, scientists are working together to develop vaccines, researchers have identified and shared hundreds of viral genome sequences, more than 200 clinical trials have been launched, and international evidence synthesis organisations are rapidly synthesising the emerging evidence to assist policymakers in making informed decisions.”

Professor Zoe Jordan, JBI Executive Director, says: “Globally, healthcare environments are changing rapidly, which leads to a need for guidance to practice high-quality, effective care.

“Now, more than ever, we see the value and the necessity of having access to the best available research evidence. Not only for what is effective, but what is feasible or appropriate in different clinical or geographical settings” Professor Jordan says.

/University Release. This material comes from the originating organization and may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. View in full here.