Cochrane News

Cochrane London 2023: Call for abstracts now open

1 week 3 days ago

Cochrane London 2023: Forward together for trusted evidence
4-6 September 2023
Central London, UK

Cochrane UK is delighted to be hosting the  Cochrane Colloquium at the Queen Elizabeth II (QEII) Centre in London, UK from the 4 to 6 of September 2023, with satellite events and meetings on the 3rd September.

Cochrane holds an annual conference, known as a Colloquium, that brings together Cochrane researchers, clinical professionals, early career professionals, patients and carers, policymakers, and anyone interested in evidence synthesis and evidence-based healthcare. The events are a mix of keynote speakers, training opportunities, workshops, presentations, and a lively social and networking atmosphere. They are an exciting opportunity for a community of evidence synthesis enthusiasts to share, learn, and connect.  

Today, 30 January 2023, the call for abstracts has opened. The deadline for submissions is Wednesday, 1 March 2023. 

The theme of the Colloquium is 'Forward together for trusted evidence', which explores the challenges for the future around the trustworthiness of healthcare information whilst also celebrating 30 years of producing trusted evidence. 

We invite abstract submissions for the following streams: producing trusted evidence; advocating for trusted evidence; informing health and care decisions; and co-production and working together. 

We recognize that everything Cochrane does is about and for patients and other health consumers. We ask that all abstract submissions consider the impact on patients and healthcare consumers. In particular, we welcome submissions that are co-produced, co-presented or co-designed with patients or other healthcare consumers.

If you are planning to submit an abstract, please see our guidance and recommendations:

 Catherine Spencer, Cochrane CEO said, “The Cochrane Colloquium will bring people together in one place to discuss, develop and promote Cochrane’s work. I am looking forward to a packed programme at my first Colloquium and encourage you to submit your contributions now.”

Martin Burton, Director of Cochrane UK, said: “We look forward to receiving your abstract submissions for London 2023. You can now submit abstracts for posters, oral presentations, or workshops – and we have guidance to help you.” 

We invite everyone to visit the Colloquium website for all information related to the Colloquium as it's released, including submissions for abstracts and awards/prizes, registration, stipend applications, and the event programme.

 

Monday, January 30, 2023
Muriah Umoquit

Cochrane seeks Head of Fundraising

1 week 4 days ago

Title: Head of Fundraising
Specifications: Permanent – Full Time
Salary: £60K per annum
Location: Ideally based in the UK, Germany or Denmark. Candidates from the rest of the world will be considered; however, Cochrane’s Central Executive Team is only able to offer consultancy contracts outside these countries (1-year fixed-term contracts)
Directorate: Development
Closing date: 21 Feb, 2023

Cochrane is an international charity. For 30 years we have responded to the challenge of making vast amounts of research evidence useful for informing decisions about health. We do this by synthesising research findings and our work has been recognised as the international gold standard for high quality, trusted information.

Cochrane's strength is in its collaborative, global community. We have 110,000+ members and supporters from more than 220 countries. Though we are spread out across the globe, our shared passion for health evidence unites us. Our Central Executive Team supports this work and is divided into five directorates: Evidence Production and Methods, Publishing and Technology, Development, and Finance and Corporate Services.

The Head of Fundraising will lead a small and dedicated team to provide the necessary vision, leadership, and fundraising skills which will enable the organisation to achieve its fundraising targets and organisational Development Strategy. They will have substantial international fundraising and management experience, a talent for building relationships and a proven track record in securing funds from international institutions, statutory sources, major international trusts and foundations, and major donors.

Don’t have every single qualification? We know that some people are less likely to apply for a job unless they are a perfect match. At Cochrane, we’re not looking for “perfect matches.” We’re looking to welcome people to our diverse, inclusive, and passionate workplace. So, if you’re excited about this role but don’t have every single qualification, we encourage you to apply anyway. Whether it’s this role or another one, you may be just the right candidate.

Our organization is built on four core values: Collaboration: Underpins everting we do, locally and globally. Relevant: The right evidence at the right time in the right format. Integrity: Independent and transparent. Quality: Reviewing and improving what we do, maintaining rigour and trust.

You can expect:

  • An opportunity to truly impact health globally
  • A flexible work environment
  • A comprehensive onboarding experiences
  • An environment where people feel welcome, heard, and included, regardless of their differences

Cochrane welcomes applications from a wide range of perspectives, experiences, locations and backgrounds; diversity, equity and inclusion are key to our values.

How to apply

  • For further information on the role and how to apply, please click here.
  • The deadline to receive your application is 21st Feb, 2023.
  • The supporting statement should indicate why you are applying for the post, and how far you meet the requirements, using specific examples.
  • Read our Recruitment Privacy Statement
Wednesday, January 25, 2023 Category: Jobs
Lydia Parsonson

What health evidence can we trust when we need it most?

1 week 5 days ago

Dr Jenny McSharry, Health Psychologist and lecturer in the School of Psychology at the University of Galway, explains what systematic reviews are and why they are a particularly trustworthy source of health evidence. 

Dr Jenny Mc Sharry was supported by an Evidence Synthesis Ireland Writing Mentorship (Grant code ESI-2021-001) and this blog post was originally posted on Evidently Cochrane.

When we are diagnosed with a new condition, experience a worrying symptom or need to make a health decision for ourselves or our loved ones, it can be hard to know where to turn. How often have we found ourselves unable to sleep, alone at 3AM, searching online for answers to questions we never thought we would have to ask?  In times of anxiety and uncertainty, how can we know what health evidence to trust when we need it most?

When looking for reliable information to help with health decisions, reviews of evidence, in particular systematic reviews, can be a good place to start.

Systematic reviews of multiple studies can be useful for health decisions

Reviews that bring together and summarise the existing evidence are more reliable than one research study, or one person’s opinion or experience. Lots of things can affect the findings of a research study and we can have more confidence in reviews that bring together lots of studies. There is more information on why Personal experiences or anecdotes (stories) are an unreliable basis for assessing the effects of most treatments on the Evidently Cochrane blog.

Systematic reviews are seen as the gold-standard of research evidence. A systematic review is a type of review that tries to find, assess, and summarise all the evidence that meets pre-specified criteria to answer a specific question. Researchers who complete systematic reviews follow a number of key steps to make their findings more trustworthy.

Systematic reviews summarise evidence related to a specific question

Systematic reviews look for evidence that might help answer a specific question, and clearly outline this question from the start. For example, a systematic review Antihistamines for motion sickness was done to find out if  medicines used for allergy symptoms (antihistamines) work and are safe in preventing travel (motion) sickness. The review summarises evidence on how antihistamines compare with dummy treatment (placebo), no treatment, and other medicines. This review is useful if you want to find evidence about medicines for travel sickness, but not if you want to know if you should avoid reading or drink ginger tea while travelling. When a review clearly states its focus, it helps us judge whether it is relevant and useful to us.

Systematic reviews aim to find all studies that meet certain criteria

Systematic reviews researchers try to find and include all studies relevant to a specific question. This is important, as we want all relevant information to be available to us when making a health decision. When using evidence from a review to decide if we should start a new treatment for example, we want to be sure that studies that found benefits, studies that found harms, and studies that found little or no difference, are just as likely to have been included.

Systematic review researchers try to find all relevant studies by clearly outlining the sources they will search, and by making a list of the criteria they will use to decide if studies should be included. For example, in our review Video calls for reducing social isolation and loneliness in older people, we wanted to find out if older people who used video calls to keep in touch with family and friends feel less lonely than those who did not. For this review, we needed to decide on what we meant by older adults, as the findings might be different for people aged 65 and older, or people aged 70 and older. For this review, we decided to include studies of people aged 65 and older and made it clear when reporting the findings that this was the group we had focused on.

Systematic review researchers clearly state the methods they will use to identify studies before starting the review. Other researchers should be able to use these methods and find the same set of studies.

Systematic reviews assess and report on the quality of evidence

When reading reviews of evidence, it is important to know how many relevant studies there are, but also to know if the studies are of good quality. Even if a number of studies find that a treatment is beneficial, we may not want to choose this treatment if we find out that the number of people included in the studies was very small, or that the way in which people were identified to take part in the studies was not clear. For a systematic review, researchers assess if the methods used in the included studies were appropriate. Researchers then make a judgement on the level of certainty we can have in the overall evidence, based on whether the included studies were done well or not.

Finding relevant systematic reviews: Where to look?

When it comes to trustworthiness, not all information we find is equal, and it is good to know that systematic reviews can be helpful in making health decisions. However, when feeling anxious about a health condition or symptom, or when trying to make an urgent health decision, it can be hard to know how to find relevant systematic reviews.

Cochrane is an independent global organisation that aims to provide high-quality evidence to inform decisions about health and care. Cochrane systematic reviews are published online in the Cochrane Library. The Cochrane Library is free to access for people in the UK and Ireland (and in many other countries). You can search by topic, and the reviews all have a Plain Language Summary. The blogs here on Evidently Cochrane aim to make health evidence easy to understand and use by providing summaries of Cochrane Reviews in context, often alongside patients’ and health professionals’ experiences. Evidently Cochrane includes an A-Z list of topics to make it easier to search for relevant evidence, and can be a good place to start when supporting family and friends or making choices about our own health.

What else can you do to work out if health information is trustworthy?

If you are interested in finding out more about health information and what we can trust, the blog, Making health decisions: things that can help, looks at some key things to consider to help us to make the right decision and to reduce the risk of regretting our choices later on. The blog also reminds us that summaries of research evidence are just one part of how we make health decisions, and our own preferences and values and the views of healthcare professionals are also very important. The blog includes lots of resources to help you think critically about health information and to support your decision-making.

Tuesday, January 24, 2023
Muriah Umoquit

New Cochrane review on family-centred interventions for Indigenous early childhood well-being by primary healthcare services

2 weeks 4 days ago

Family-centred care is a way of providing care that focuses on the needs of children while providing planned care around the whole family unit. A new Cochrane review published recently found there was a small improvement in the overall health and well-being of Indigenous children and their families when they participated in family-centred care programmes at a primary healthcare service.

‘Family centred-care is not new,’ says lead author Dr Natalie Strobel, Senior Research Fellow at Edith Cowan University’s Centre for Improving Health Services for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children and Families. ‘Aboriginal Medical Services have been doing this for years. For example, they don’t just immunise babies, they talk to mums, aunts, uncles, grandparents and everybody that’s part of that family unit – trying to ensure that everybody's getting care. That’s both health and social care, so it might be making sure there’s appropriate housing, referrals to services that they needed or for other types of support.’

‘We know that primary healthcare, particularly Indigenous-led services, are well placed to deliver services that reflect the needs of Indigenous children and their families. Of our author team of nine, four are Aboriginal and have worked in health services as nurses and midwives for a long time. Families want primary healthcare services that both support them and recognise Indigenous ways of knowing and doing business. This can be delivered through environmental, communication, educational, counselling, and family support approaches.’

A key finding of this new review was that family-centred care delivered by primary healthcare services may improve the overall health and well-being of children and their families, however, due to a range of factors, the evidence was rated as very low certainty. There was also evidence to suggest that families who participated in family-centred care increased their parenting knowledge and awareness to a small degree. However, for all other outcomes it was unclear whether family-centred care improves specific child health and well-being outcomes. Ultimately more high quality trials are needed to generate evidence to determine whether family-centred care improves the health and well-being of Indigenous children.

‘We consider family-centred care to be really promising, but we’re not confident in the evidence for a range of reasons, which are quite complex,’ Natalie says. ‘For example, people in the studies were aware of what intervention they were getting, many people did not come back to report their results, and not all the studies reported the information we were interested in. Also, some of the issues around low quality of evidence are really hard for communities that are doing this type of work to get around.’

‘For instance, in the United States you're delivering the intervention on a reservation and there's not a huge number of people to do this work. Often the person who delivers the intervention also collects the data. We know that's got a significant level of bias involved in it, but it's also very pragmatic, that's what happens and how it has to work because there's not enough people to complete the project. This highlights the challenges of conducting high quality studies, and underscores the need to build capacity and support people in communities.’

‘I think with the advent of this type of research, it will give people an idea of what's going on in the field so that they know where potentially they could identify and collect better evidence to add to this emerging evidence base. Ultimately it is quite a tricky space, and realistically when you are trying to do things that are good for your community, you have to make allowances and be pragmatic about how research is delivered.’

‘Overall, this was a huge and complex review that was really challenging to deliver but we’re so pleased we did,’ Natalie says. ‘I really have to hand it to the team though. It was their sheer persistence that delivered this review, and the reward now for us is having this really high quality piece of work that people from health services can use to show how effective their programs are. We wanted to support local services to advocate for themselves and now they can use this information as they need – either to show where they might need to make changes or to demonstrate that what they're doing is effective and benefits children, families and communities. They are really making a difference.’

Strobel NA, Chamberlain C, Campbell SK, Shields L, Bainbridge RG, Adams C, Edmond KM, Marriott R, McCalman J. Family‐centred interventions for Indigenous early childhood well‐being by primary healthcare services. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2022, Issue 12. Art. No.: CD012463. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD012463.pub2.

Written by  Shauna Hurley, Cochrane Australia 

 

Thursday, January 19, 2023
Muriah Umoquit

Celebrating Archie Cochrane

3 weeks 6 days ago

Cochrane is named in honour of Archie Cochrane, a British medical researcher who contributed greatly to the development of epidemiology as a science. 

Archie Cochrane is best known for his influential book, Effectiveness and Efficiency: Random Reflections on Health Services, published in 1972. The principles he set out in it so clearly were straightforward: he suggested that, because resources would always be limited, they should be used to provide equitably those forms of health care which had been shown in properly designed evaluations to be effective. In particular, he stressed the importance of using evidence from randomized controlled trials (RCTs) because these were likely to provide much more reliable information than other sources of evidence. Cochrane's simple propositions were soon widely recognised as seminally important - by lay people as well as by health professionals.

How can we have a rational health service if we don’t know which of the things being done in it are useful and which are useless or possibly even harmful? — Archie Cochrane

In 1979 he wrote, "It is surely a great criticism of our profession that we have not organised a critical summary, by specialty or subspecialty, adapted periodically, of all relevant randomised controlled trials." His challenge led to the establishment during the 1980s of an international collaboration to develop the Oxford Database of Perinatal Trials.

In 1987, the year before Cochrane died, he referred to a systematic review of RCTs of care during pregnancy and childbirth as "a real milestone in the history of randomized trials and in the evaluation of care", and suggested that other specialties should copy the methods used. His encouragement, and the endorsement of his views by others, led to the opening of the first Cochrane Centre (in Oxford, UK) in 1992 and the founding of  Cochrane in 1993.

Archie portrait made up of contributors pictures

Today Cochrane members and supporters come from 190 countries . We are researchers, health professionals, patients, carers, and people passionate about improving health outcomes for everyone, everywhere. Our global independent network gathers and summarizes the best evidence from research to help you make informed choices about treatment and we have been doing this for 30 years.

Thursday, January 12, 2023
Muriah Umoquit

Guidance for Colloquium abstract submissions

1 month ago

Cochrane London 2023: Forward together for trusted evidence
4-6 September 2023
Central London, UK

Cochrane UK is delighted to be hosting the  Cochrane Colloquium at the Queen Elizabeth II (QEII) Centre in London, UK from the 4 to 6 of September 2023, with satellite events and meetings on the 3rd September.

Cochrane is an international non-profit network that provides evidence-based scientific knowledge to improve healthcare for all people worldwide. Cochrane Reviews summarise all available research on a specific health question. They are up-to-date, follow a rigorous scientific methodology, and are free from commercial conflicts of interest. Health professionals, patients, and policy makers trust Cochrane Reviews for their healthcare decision-making. Cochrane works with researchers, health professionals, patients, policy makers, and media representatives from around the world to make Cochrane Reviews relevant and usable.

Cochrane holds an annual conference, known as a Colloquium, that brings together Cochrane researchers, clinical professionals, early career professionals, patients and carers, policymakers, and anyone interested in evidence synthesis and evidence-based healthcare. The events are a mix of keynote speakers, training opportunities, workshops, presentations, and a lively social and networking atmosphere. They are an exciting opportunity for a community of evidence synthesis enthusiasts to share, learn, and connect.  

We invite everyone to visit the website - colloquium2023.cochrane.org - for all information related to the colloquium as it's released, including submissions for abstracts and awards/prizes, registration, stipend applications, and the event programme.

The theme of the Colloquium is 'Forward together for trusted evidence', which explores the challenges for the future around the trustworthiness of healthcare information whilst also celebrating 30 years of producing trusted evidence. Today, we have launched guidance and recommendations to help you prepare in advance for your abstract submissions. The official call for abstracts will open on the 30 January 2023.

We invite abstract submissions for the following streams: producing trusted evidence; advocating for trusted evidence; informing health and care decisions; and co-production and working together. 

Catherine Spencer, Cochrane CEO said, “The Cochrane Colloquium will bring people together in one place to discuss, develop and promote Cochrane’s work. I am looking forward to a packed programme at my first colloquium and encourage you to start to think about your contributions now as the call for abstracts will be open soon.”

Martin Burton, Director of Cochrane UK, said: “We are really looking forward to receiving submissions of abstracts for London 2023.  We’d like to encourage everyone to start thinking about their contributions now – whether they are planning oral presentations, workshops or posters. We have prepared this guidance to help everyone to prepare their contributions in good time before submissions are formally opened on 30 January 2023.” 

  Wednesday, January 18, 2023
Muriah Umoquit

Cochrane seeks Support Officer - Flexible location, remote work

1 month 2 weeks ago

Location: Flexible location (remote working) – contract type dependent on location.
Specifications: Permanent position. Employment contract if successful applicant based in UK, Germany or Denmark. Consultancy contract in other locations.
Hours: Full-time (37.5 hours per week) or part-time (please specify desired working hours)
Salary: £30,000 per annum, prorata
Application Closing Date: Tuesday 17 January 2023 (Midnight GMT).

This role is an exciting opportunity to use your communication and problem-solving skills to make a difference in the field of healthcare research and publishing. 

Cochrane implemented Editorial Manager in 2021 as the editorial and production system for Cochrane Reviews. This role has a significant focus on supporting authors, editors and peer reviewers in using Editorial Manager for submission and peer review; and our linked system Convey for managing Declarations of Interest. Applications are particularly welcomed from candidates with experience of using these or similar systems.

The Cochrane Support team provides technical and user support to Cochrane editorial teams and review authors; and handle enquiries from members of the public about Cochrane’s work. We pride ourselves on our timely and coordinated support service, covering a broad range of areas, with a focus on Cochrane review-writing software and editorial processing and publication.

The team works closely with Cochrane’s Central Editorial Service and other related departments, to ensure accurate, consistent responses to queries on Cochrane technology, policies and methods.

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.

Cochrane welcomes applications from a wide range of perspectives, experiences, locations, and backgrounds; diversity, equity and inclusion are key to their values.

How to apply: 

  • For further information on the role and how to apply, please click here  
  • The supporting statement should indicate why you are applying for the post, and how far you meet the requirements, using specific examples.
  • If you are applying for part-time work, please specify the number of hours you are interested in working.
  • Read our Recruitment Privacy Statement
  • Deadline for applications: Tuesday 17 January 2023 (12 midnight GMT)

 

Thursday, December 22, 2022 Category: Jobs
Muriah Umoquit

Cochrane seeks IT Infrastructure Operations Manager - Remote, UK

1 month 2 weeks ago

Location: Remote, UK. 
Specifications: Permanent contract.
Hours: Full-time week (flexible working considered) – 37.5 hours.
Salary: £52,363 per annum.
Application Closing Date: 8 January (Midnight GMT Time)

    We are a global, independent organization that strives to inform health-care decisions every day. We gather and summarize the best evidence from research to help doctors, nurses, patients, carers, researchers, funders, and policymakers. We do not accept commercial or conflicted funding, and work to minimize risk of bias, in order to generate authoritative and reliable information.

    As our new IT Infrastructure Operations Manager, you will ensure the fitness-for-purpose, cost-effectiveness, availability, and security of Cochrane’s IT systems infrastructure and operations. Monitor and help manage the lifecycle of our in-house software. Set policy for, and advise on the provision of, IT for the Cochrane Central Executive team (ca. 100 people).

    Cochrane welcomes applications from a wide range of perspectives, experiences, locations, and backgrounds; diversity, equity and inclusion are key to their values.

    How to apply:

    • For further information on the job description and how to apply, please click here
    • The supporting statement should indicate why you are applying for the post, and how far you meet the requirements, using specific examples. 
    • Note that we will assess applications as they are received, and therefore may fill the post before the deadline.
    • Read our Recruitment Privacy Statement
    • Deadline for applications: 8 January 2023 (Midnight GMT).
    • Interviews to be held on: W/C 16 February 2023(times and exact dates to be confirmed).
    Thursday, December 22, 2022 Category: Jobs
    Muriah Umoquit

    Cochrane seeks Senior Managing Editor

    1 month 2 weeks ago

    Specifications: Full Time (Permanent)
    Salary: £51,489 per annum
    Location: Ideally based in the UK, Germany or Denmark. Candidates from the rest of the world will be considered; however, Cochrane’s Central Executive Team is only able to offer consultancy contracts outside these countries (1-year fixed-term contracts)
    Application Closing Date: 8th January 2023

    Cochrane has established a centrally-resourced Editorial Service to support the efficient and timely publication of high-quality systematic reviews in the Cochrane Library. The reviews that are published through the Central Editorial Service address some of the research questions considered to be the most important to decision makers.

    Working as part of a friendly and supportive international team, the Senior Managing Editor will be responsible for managing the efficient and timely editorial processing of a portfolio of approximately 150 publications per year.  The role holder will be expected to prioritise and delegate editorial tasks as appropriate. They will also need to be an advocate for the Editorial Service internally and externally to Cochrane and remain alert to immediate demands of delivering high-quality review content for publication in a timely fashion.      

    Reporting to the Executive Editor and working with members of the Editorial Production and Methods Directorate, the role holder will need to have good awareness of Cochrane guidance for different types of standard and complex systematic reviews (intervention, qualitative, diagnostic test accuracy, prognosis, rapid and overview), plan how they will need to be handled in their team, and work to ensure that deadlines are met. The role holder will also be required to ensure that pilots aimed at innovating the editorial process can be supported as needed.  

    The majority of Cochrane Central Executive staff are located in London, UK, however flexible locations are possible for the right candidate. Please note, however, that we are only able to offer consultancy contracts outside of the UK, Germany or Denmark.

    We will consider extended notice periods if required for applicants who wish to honour existing contracts. We fully support remote and flexible working arrangements.  

    How to apply

    • For further information on the role and how to apply, please click here
    • The deadline to receive your application is by 8th January 2023. 
    • The supporting statement should indicate why you are applying for the post, and how far you meet the requirements, using specific examples.
    • Note that we will assess applications as they are received, and therefore may fill the post before the deadline.
    • Read our Recruitment Privacy Statement
    Wednesday, December 21, 2022 Category: Jobs
    Lydia Parsonson

    Citizen Scientist event by Cochrane Mexico makes over 250,000 study classifications for researchers

    1 month 2 weeks ago

    Cochrane Crowd is a global community of volunteers who are helping to classify the research needed to support informed decision-making about health care. Recently Cochrane Mexico held an in-person screening challenge that helped introduce students to randomized control trials and evidence assessment while contributing to global research efforts. 

    The job of the Cochrane Crowd community is to review descriptions of research studies to identify and classify randomized controlled trials (RCTs), a type of study that is considered the gold standard for clinical trials. Reports of RCTs are then fed into Cochrane’s Central Register of Controlled Trials, helping Cochrane authors and other systematic reviewers around the world quickly find the evidence they need to determine whether a treatment works, or whether a diagnostic test is accurate.

    8,000 RCTs identified in 24-hour student event

    The Cochrane Mexico Associated Centre at Sinaloa’s Pediatric Hospital and the Autonomous University of Sinaloa took on their second in-person Cochrane Crowd challenge. For 24 hours students from both logged into Cochrane Crowd, screened studies, and identified RCTs. In total, 579 students performed more than 250,000 classifications, which identified 8,712 RCTs. This 24-hour event topped the number of RCTs identified in Cochrane Mexico’s first Cochrane Crowd event in 2018, which lasted for 3 days.

    Students who screened more than 1,000 records received their Cochrane membership . In addition, evidence-based medicine books were awarded to all those who exceeded 1,000 classifications, had a sensitivity greater than 95%, and an overall accuracy greater than 70% to identify clinical trials. 

    Giordano Perez-Gaxiola, director of Cochrane Mexico and key challenge organizer, says: “Cochrane Crowd is a great introduction to systematic reviews and randomized control trials for students. Having students participate in a time-limited challenge is a fun way to engage students and was simple for us to set-up. The students exceeded all our expectations this year and we are so proud of them! Many of the students enjoyed it so much and could see results of their efforts for global health research that they are continuing to do screening on Cochrane Crowd!”

    Anyone can join Cochrane Crowd and no previous experience is necessary

    “Cochrane sends its thanks to all those involved in this citizen scientist challenge using Cochrane Crowd – what an amazing achievement in just 24 hours!” says Anna Noel-Storr, Head of Cochrane’s Evidence Pipeline. “We hope these students inspire everyone to give Cochrane Crowd a try. From medical students, to clinicians, to anyone with an interest in health research – being a part of Cochrane Crowd can help individuals develop skills in understanding health evidence while collectively contributing to global research efforts.” 



    Has Cochrane Mexico inspired you to organise a Cochrane Crowd challenge at your workplace or university? If so, please get in contact and we will support you to get one up and running: crowd@cochrane.org.

    Thursday, January 12, 2023
    Muriah Umoquit

    End of year message from Cochrane's CEO, Catherine Spencer

    1 month 2 weeks ago

    Dear Cochrane Colleagues, Members and Supporters, 

    Thank you to everyone across our community for your dedication and commitment to Cochrane during 2022. The last few years have at times felt tumultuous, both due to Covid and world events, but also because of the changes we are making to ensure that Cochrane is fit for a future that meets our vision of a world of better health for all people, where decisions about health and care are informed by high-quality evidence. 

    We are well on our way to creating an evolved impact-driven organisation to support evidence-based health and social care. With your help we are building on your enormous achievements, over the past thirty years, to create new ways of producing the right evidence, in a timely manner, to support decision making.  

    Our updated Future Cochrane micro-site demonstrates the scale of progress at Cochrane and the work under way to transition to our new model. The site is designed to be a one-stop shop for news and information on the change process.  

    In November we announced Cochrane’s first seven new Thematic Groups. The first groups are: 

    • Global Ageing 
    • Health Equity 
    • Nutrition and Physical Activity 
    • Person-Centred Care, Public Health and Health Systems 
    • Sexual and Reproductive Health 
    • Vascular 
    • Work and Health and Social Security 

    Feature profiles of each Thematic Group will be published in the months ahead, with Person Centred Care, Health Systems and Public Health and Nutrition and Physical Activity kicking off the series this month. Keep an eye out for Health Equity when the series resumes in early February.  

    Many of you are interested in the next steps of our transition. We will make further announcements about the process for establishing Evidence Synthesis Units next year. 

    At the end of November Jimmy Volmink provided a superb Cochrane lecture focusing on equality and diversity. Many of the themes and challenges that he raised are already being threaded through our future plans.  

    Open Access is of course key to that future, ensuring that more people have immediate access to our content.  Progress demonstrating our commitment was evident last month when Cochrane launched Cochrane Evidence Synthesis and Methods, our first open access journal, in which we will publish diverse types of evidence synthesis, methods research, and research on other areas vital to evidence synthesis. This new platform allows us to disseminate research beyond systematic reviews from across Cochrane groups and collaborators ­– who until now, have not been able to publish their research in a Cochrane journal.  

    And of course, we have been delighted with the high-profile reviews that we’ve published in the Cochrane Library. 

    As we ramp up our fundraising efforts across the organisation it’s great to see that we have already had success in the US, with  $5 million for Cochrane Eyes & Vision US Satellite,  $1 million to Cochrane US Network and in South Africa with partners, funding for The Global Evidence, Local Adaptation project.  

    Other successes include: 

    Diversity and Inclusion progress: 

    And there’s also great news from our Evidence Pipeline Team. Cochrane has always been a leader in innovation, and now we have demonstrated further success by introducing the ability to browse the Cochrane Library by patient/population, intervention, comparison, and outcomes, which is universally shortened to PICO. It is now possible to browse Cochrane content using themed groups of included PICOs from the Cochrane Library homepage. Users can discover Cochrane content using themed groups of included PICOs curated and maintained by Cochrane PICO ontology experts. With one click, users can see all available search results for categories with included PICOs. In addition, there is clear contextual help for those new to PICOs, with clear guidance on using PICOs and links to the relevant section of the Cochrane Handbook.  

    Additional successes include: 

    • Over 5200 new contributors have joined Cochrane Crowd this year, bringing total Crowd community to 28,302 people from 178 countries! 
    • 1.7 million records assessed by the Crowd this year 
    • Launched new Crowd task PICO Extract in August 2022. Over 4000 RCTs have now been PICO annotated.  
    • We launched the Central Study Identification Service – a service that helps to identify the studies for any Cochrane Review. We are in a pilot phase at the moment but the service has been used by 7 Cochrane Intervention Reviews so far and reduced author screening by an average of 70%.  
    • Cochrane Crowd hosted a huge 24-hour screening challenge in October this year: organised by Cochrane Mexico using Cochrane Classmate, nearly 600 students screened over 250,000 records in just 24 hours. 

    2022 has been a busy but productive year, thank you all for the incredible work you have done. 

    2023 promises to be challenging as we continue our transformation. This includes the changes to UK Review Groups as a result of the loss of NIHR funding in the UK; their contribution to the Cochrane Library and Cochrane has been immense. It is difficult to find words which adequately describe how much they have given to Cochrane. 

    As we look towards a new future at Cochrane I look forward to collaborating and working with you to use the best of the past to create more impact in more locations around the world. 

    Best wishes for a wonderful festive season and a happy and healthy 2023, 

    Catherine Spencer, CEO 

    On behalf of the Executive Leadership Team 

    Wednesday, December 21, 2022
    Muriah Umoquit
    Checked
    7 hours 9 minutes ago
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