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Launching Cochrane Portugal to support the use of high quality, trusted health information

pon, 01/27/2020 - 17:39

 Cochrane is delighted to announce the official launch of Cochrane Portugal, a new Cochrane centre with a vision to increase the use of best evidence to inform healthcare decision making throughout Portugal.

On January 16th, 2020, Cochrane Portugal was launched in Lisbon, at the Institute for Evidence Based Health of the Faculties of Medicine and Pharmacy at the University of Lisbon.

After presenting the actual structure approved by the Cochrane  Board - three Associate Centers at the Faculties of Medicine at the Universities of Lisbon, Coimbra and Porto – António Vaz Carneiro (Director of Cochrane Portugal) projected the future in terms of adding three potential Affiliate Centers at Universities of Braga, Covilhã and Lisbon (Nova University) that will constitute Cochrane Portugal in the near future.

After this introduction, Mark Wilson (CEO of Cochrane) addressed a 150 strong audience talking about “Leading Global Evidence-Informed Healthcare in the 2020s: Cochrane’s Achievements and Challenges”. He provided an overview of Cochrane, spoke about Strategy 2020 and presented Cochrane’s four goals. Also stressed was the need to have strong Knowledge Translation activities in Portugal.

The final part of the meeting was a roundtable headed by the former Ministry of Health, Prof. Adalberto Campos Fernandes and the representatives of the Portuguese Medical Association (Alexandre Lourenço, MD) and Portuguese Pharmacists Association (Ana Paula Martins, PharmD). The exchange with the audience was a lively one and plenty of ideas on how Cochrane Portugal can play an important role in the national health system were shared.

The meeting was closed by the Secretary of State (António Sales) who, in a short speech, addressed the need for high quality evidence to support policy decision making and stated the need for Cochrane Portugal to work closely with the government in providing relevant and usable evidence.

Monday, January 27, 2020

Cochrane Heart seeks Assistant Managing Editor - London, UK

pet, 01/24/2020 - 18:24
Location of position: London, UKHours: Part TimeHours per week (%FTE): 18.25 hours per week (50% FTE)Salary: £29,089 - £34,090 per annumCloses: 11 Feb 2020

Cochrane Heart aims to prepare, maintain and promote the access of systematic reviews of the effect of interventions for treating and preventing heart diseases.

The Assistant Managing Editor will work closely with the Managing Editor to contribute to an efficient editorial process. This varied role will include identifying and communicating with peer reviewers, responding to queries from authors and editors, ensuring the timely completion of conflict of interest forms, assisting with the preparation of reports, as well as more general administrative duties. This post is available for 1 year in the first instance.

We are looking for a self-motivated individual with strong organisational and communication skills, a high degree of attention to detail and experience of working in a busy office environment.

If you wish to discuss the post informally, please contact Nicole Martin (

Friday, January 24, 2020 Category: Jobs

2020 New Year Message from Cochrane's Chief Executive Officer and Editor in Chief

pon, 01/20/2020 - 17:14

Mark Wilson, CEO and Karla Soares Weiser, Editor in Chief extend their warmest wishes to the Cochrane community at the beginning of this new year.

Here, they reflect on the achievement from the last 12 months, including their personal highlights and summarize what lies ahead for Cochrane over the next year.

Read the Strategy to 2020

Read more about Cochrane’s 2020 Annual Targets

Monday, January 20, 2020

Cochrane seeks - Project Manager (CRM)

sri, 01/15/2020 - 17:02

This role is an exciting opportunity to use your experience in CRM Project Management to make a difference in the field of healthcare research. 

This role is the first point of contact and key relationship holder for our CRM supplier and will manage all work that is conducted with that partner. This ranges from technical support issues through to major development projects, all of which is outsourced but requires project management expertise within Cochrane to ensure that the partnership works efficiently.

We are looking for a self-motivated and highly organised individual who is able to work effectively and collaboratively with our CRM partner.  The successful candidate for this role will have:

  • Project management skills and experience.
  • Experience of successfully managing and working collaboratively with external suppliers.
  • Experience of using a CRM system, and of generating bespoke reports to track and analyse organisational
  • performance and engagement.
  • Experience in providing excellent customer service, training and support.
  • Demonstrated experience of strong relationship building and interpersonal skills.
  • Experience with software and systems related to CRM and communications, such as Jira, SugarCRM and MailChimp in addition to the ability to learn new systems quickly.

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 with Project Manager 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 from here
  • Deadline for applications: (05 February 2020 12 midnight GMT)
  • Interviews to be held on: Week commencing 25 February 2020

Wednesday, January 15, 2020 Category: Jobs

Winner of Thomas C Chalmers Award 2019 for Best Oral Presentation - Dena Zeraatkar

uto, 01/14/2020 - 10:09

The Thomas C Chalmers MD Award Committee 2019 wishes to extend its congratulations to this year’s winner for best Oral presentation, Dena Zeraatkar.

2019 Oral presentation winner - Dena Zeraatkar

Froeks Kamminga, Methods Liaison Officer in the Editorial and Methods Department, caught up with best Oral presentation winner Dena Zeraatkar to find out a little more about her and ask what winning the award meant to her.

Dena is a doctoral candidate in the Health Research Methodology program in the department of Health Research Methods, Evidence, and Impact at McMaster University (Canada). Her work centers on evidence synthesis and evaluation in nutrition. She is also a member of the NutriRECS group, an international consortium of nutrition researchers, methodologists, consumers, and clinicians dedicated to developing dietary guidelines that meet internationally accepted standards for trustworthy guideline development. 

Why did you decide to enter the competition?
I attended the Cochrane Colloquium for the first time in 2018 and was extremely impressed by the work presented by the delegates. It was an excellent opportunity to learn about methods in evidence synthesis and to expand my network. My colleagues and I subsequently decided to submit two abstracts describing the methodological aspects of our work on a guideline addressing the consumption of red and processed meat.

What do you take away from winning this award, or what does it mean to you, personally?
It is an honor to win an award named after the late Dr. Thomas Chalmers, who played a pivotal role in the development of randomized controlled trials and meta-analysis. Also, it is an honor to be recognized by the largest organization dedicated to the promotion of evidence-informed health decision-making. My colleagues and I hope to continue prioritizing rigorous methodology in our work in nutrition and in other areas.

In terms of the impact of the award on her work, she stated that the award had motivated her and her colleagues to continue their work developing high-quality, trustworthy guidelines in nutrition. She added: “Nutrition is a challenging field to study. It is a positive experience for us to know that others recognize the importance and value of the work we have been doing.”

Lastly, what would your message would be to other researchers considering entering for the Thomas C Chalmers award in 2020?
I hope that other researchers would be equally inspired by the legacies or Dr Chalmers and other individuals on whose work current emerging research builds. I am looking forward to seeing what next year's delegates will present at Cochrane 2020 in Toronto!

Dena’s presentation: "A novel approach to evaluate the plausibility of causal relationships from non-randomized studies" .


For further information on other prizes which are awarded at the Colloquium, please visit

Thursday, January 30, 2020

A statement in support of EMA’s clinical study report transparency policy

pon, 01/13/2020 - 10:36

Cochrane supports EMA’s policy to make drug regulatory documents publicly available, which is currently the subject of a legal challenge.

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) is awaiting a ruling from the European Court of Justice regarding whether they are legally allowed to grant public access to clinical study reports (CSRs).

CSRs are detailed documents that pharmaceutical companies submit to regulators as part of the drug authorisation process. They are often the single most comprehensive source of information on a clinical trial, giving details of the design and methods used, as well as results for under-reported outcomes like adverse effects.

EMA started proactively publishing new CSRs in 2016 – the first regulator to take such a step (The programme is currently suspended, due to the Agency’s move from London to Amsterdam).  In response, two pharmaceutical companies have launched legal challenges against EMA, arguing that the information contained in CSRs should be considered commercially confidential.

An initial ruling by the European Court of Justice in February 2018 found in favour of EMA. This went to appeal and, in September 2019, an advocate general for the court published an opinion that the policy does in fact compromise commercial interests. A final judgment is expected soon. The EMA Management Board has said that, if the advocate general’s recommendations are followed, “existing transparency policies would be impaired and have to be revised”.

Statement from Cochrane’s Editor in Chief, Dr Karla Soares-Weiser

“Much research has shown that journal article reporting of randomized controlled trials is often incomplete and that some trials are never published. Access to CSRs for re-analysis is one tool to strengthen integrity in medical research – reducing the potential for mistakes, misinterpretations, bias, evidence distortion, corruption and fraud.

EMA’s transparency efforts should be encouraged and furthered, not scaled back. We are very concerned that a judgment in this case that CSRs should be treated as commercially confidential information could set a dangerous precedent that will hinder the work of researchers, slow scientific progress and – in the worst-case scenario – put people’s health and lives at risk.”


Monday, January 13, 2020

Cochrane seeks - Research Integrity Editor

uto, 01/07/2020 - 10:28

Specifications: Full Time, Permanent
Salary: £38,000 – £45,000
Location: Flexible (In office, homeworking, flexible arrangements)
Application Closing Date: 26th January 2020 (At 12 midnight GMT)

This role is an exciting opportunity to use your experience as a Research Integrity Editor to make a difference in the field of health care research. 

Cochrane is committed to independence, transparency, and integrity in healthcare research. The role of the Research Integrity Editor will be to support and strengthen this commitment through advocacy, policy development and implementation, and community outreach.

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:

  • Degree in relevant field or equivalent
  • Strong understanding and experience of editorial and publishing policy in the Science, Medicine and Technology sector, including conflict of interest, scientific fraud and misconduct, and avoiding research waste
  • Strong understanding of issues around methodological quality in primary and secondary research
  • Understanding of the importance of systematic reviews to clinical or policy decision-making
  • Ability to develop and maintain strong working relationships with key stakeholders in and outside the Cochrane community
  • Intermediate level IT skills, including Word, Excel and PowerPoint
  • Strong organization and prioritization skills
  • Attention to detail
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills
  • Ability to work methodically and accurately
  • A pro-active approach to problem-solving

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 with “Research Integrity Editor” 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 from here
  • Deadline for applications: 26th January 2020 (At 12 Midnight GMT)
  • Interviews to be held on: (TBC)
Tuesday, January 7, 2020 Category: Jobs

Submissions for abstracts open - Cochrane Colloquium, Toronto 2020

pon, 01/06/2020 - 17:03

4-7th October 2020, The Westin Harbour Castle, Toronto

The Cochrane Colloquium is Cochrane's flagship annual event. It brings people together from around the world to discuss putting research into important global health questions and promoting evidence-informed health care.

This year’s theme is ‘Rapid-Learning Health Systems,’ an approach to improve people’s experiences and health outcomes while keeping costs manageable and health care stakeholders engaged. Abstract submissions should consider the relevance to this theme.

The deadline for abstract submissions is 23.59 UTC, 9 March 2020. The Committee encourages applications from abstracts from the 2019 Colloquium that could not be presented in Santiago.

All submissions will be notified of their outcome in May 2020.

REMINDER: When submitting an abstract, we would like to ask you for a self-evaluation regarding your eligibility for the Thomas C Chalmers Award.
An accepted poster or oral presentation is eligible for the Award if: it addresses a methodological issue related to systematic reviews; and it is presented by an early-career investigator

Tuesday, January 7, 2020

Author Interview: Alcoholics Anonymous and other 12-step programs for alcohol use disorder

pon, 01/06/2020 - 15:44

Dr John Kelly, Elizabeth R. Spallin Professor of Psychiatry in the Field of Addiction Medicine, Harvard Medical School; Director, Massachusetts General hospital (MGH) Recovery Research Institute tells us about this updated Cochrane review.

What was the aim of this Cochrane review?
The aim of the review was to determine the clinical and public health benefits attributable to Alcoholics Anonymous and related 12-step Facilitation Treatments (TSF) designed to proactively link patients to AA, in helping people achieve remission from alcohol use disorder and improve their functioning and well-being.

Why is it important?
It is important because alcohol use disorder is a major cause of misery, premature death, and disease worldwide, killing ten times more people than all illicit drugs combined. AA is one of the most ubiquitous and popular sources of help for alcohol use disorder so it is important to determine the degree to which it may be helpful when evaluated against the most rigorous scientific standards available, as in the Cochrane Collaboration. 

There has been a great deal of confusion and misinformation about the state of the science on AA so we felt it was important to clarify the evidence using the highly structured and rigorous review criteria inherent in the Cochrane system.

Included in this review were more than twenty randomized controlled trials that compared AA/TSF interventions to other well-established active treatments like cognitive-behavioural interventions and motivational interviewing type treatments. Also, because AA is free and widely available, we wanted to examine the potential health care cost-benefits of implementing AA/TSF treatments relative to other more well-researched treatments to determine whether there may be savings to health care systems if they were to implement treatments that linked patients to AA.

This is an update of a review published in 2006. What has changed?
The prior review published in 2006 was based on only 8 studies and included just a few thousand participants. The quality of the evidence at that time was not strong. This updated review is based on 27 rigorous comparative investigations and included around 11,000 participants, as well as economic analyses. Thus, both the quantity and quality of the research has increased substantially in the intervening years prompting this new summary.

What are the conclusions the authors have been able to draw?
When compared to other well-established commonly delivered treatments for alcohol use disorder, AA/TSF generally performs as well as other interventions on most clinical outcomes, except for abstinence, where it does quite a bit better - particularly true for helping many more patients achieve sustained abstinence and remission. The review also found that AA/TSF reduced health care costs substantially while simultaneously improving patient’s abstinence relative to other treatments.

The quality of the evidence for the abstinence and economic outcomes was moderate to high indicating there is generally a high degree of confidence that can be placed in these new findings.

What can practitioners take from this review?
When treating patients with alcohol use disorder, AA/TSF interventions should be a frontline treatment option to be implemented in countries where AA is available. Implementing TSF interventions along the lines of those tested in this review is very likely to result in improved alcohol use disorder treatment outcomes and substantially lowered use of health care resources that saves money.

What can people seeking help for recovery from alcohol abuse learn from this Cochrane review?
Findings have important implications for people suffering from an alcohol use disorder in that there is a free, community-based, option in AA that can really help people to stop drinking and achieve lasting remission and recovery. One important finding from this review was that it does matter what type of TSF intervention people receive - better organized and well-articulated clinical linkage treatments resulted in the best outcomes. In other words, it is important for clinical programs and clinicians to utilize one of the proven manualized interventions to maximize the benefits attainable from AA participation. 

Research into freely available, community-based, recovery support resources, such as AA, was once considered nearly impossible, in recent years researchers have found creative methods of evaluating AA carefully and objectively. However what further research is needed?
The last 25 years has seen a rapid expansion in the growth of studies on AA and TSF clinical interventions designed to proactively link patients with AA. The culmination of this body of work has shown that AA can be studied and subjected to the same scientific standards as other interventions proving itself effective at helping people suffering from alcohol use disorder achieve sobriety and lasting remission all at a reduced health care cost.

These superior benefits makes sense when alcohol use disorder is viewed as a chronic illness, which for many is susceptible to relapse over months and years; one of the reasons why AA helps more people over the long-term is through its ability to keep people actively involved in its recovery-focused peer support social network over these long periods so that their brains and bodies can adjust to the absence of alcohol and the demands of recovery and help them adopt a new lifestyle that is more conducive and supportive to long-term stable remission and enhanced quality of life.

It is important to note, however, that some countries do not have AA as available as some other nations and some patients will not attend AA for various reasons despite being clinically facilitated to attend. Thus, while AA can be a valuable asset where it exists, it is important to remember that it is not suited to everyone and we need to have a variety of options available for people suffering from the range of alcohol problems and severities of alcohol use disorder. Such alternatives can take the form of medications like naltrexone and acamprosate, other ongoing professionally-delivered therapies like cognitive-behavioural counselling, and other recovery specific peer-support organizations like SMART Recovery, LifeRing, and Women for Sobriety. These other peer-based organizations await additional research to demonstrate their helpfulness but they look very promising as well.

For now, I think of AA as the closest thing in public health that we have to a free lunch - it is effective, cost-effective, and freely available. The findings are good news for sufferers and their families and, given the economic burden of alcohol use disorder in most middle and high-income countries, its availability is also good news for health care systems and national economies.

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

University of London seeks Research Assistant - London, UK

pon, 01/06/2020 - 14:56

Salary:  £26,715 to £27,511 plus London Allowance of £3,147 (pro rata) Fixed Term 9 months, Part Time 0.5 FTE
Closing Date: Friday 17 January 2020

St George's University of London is seeking a Research Assistant who is interested in conducting evidence based research examining the harms of violence and abuse on mental health. This is a stimulating 12 months research programme, funded by the UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), Violence, Abuse and Mental Health Network (VAMHN) investigating the relationship between the severity of mental health outcomes and specific characteristics of victimization including timing, duration, frequency, severity, and types of violence. These associations will be further analysed between women and men to assess the gendered nature of violence, and in relation to other social inequalities. They seek to unpack how these interacting factors are implicated in survivors’ mental health as an outcome of VA.

The post-holder will be a key member of the team from the Population Health Research Institute at St George’s University of London working alongside the prime investigator and the Research Team. The post-holder will draft data extraction templated, conduct data extraction, contribute to data analysis, assist with integration of study findings and help writing blog for the study’s findings. A survivor panel will be involved in the review which the postholder will help coordinate.

 For more information and to apply:

Monday, January 6, 2020 Category: Jobs

Cochrane International Mobility - Franciszek Borys

pet, 01/03/2020 - 19:18

Cochrane is made up of 11,000 members and over 67,000 supporters come from more than 130 countries, worldwide. Our volunteers and contributors are researchers, health professionals, patients, carers, people passionate about improving health outcomes for everyone, everywhere.

Getting involved in Cochrane’s work means becoming part of a global community. The Cochrane International Mobility programme connects successful applicants with a placement in a host Cochrane Group, learning more about the production, use, and knowledge translation of Cochrane reviews. The prgramme offers opportunities for learning and training not only for participants but also for host staff.

In this series, we profile those that have participated in the Cochrane International Mobility Program and learn more about their experiences.

Name: Franciszek Borys
Location: Poznan, Poland
Cochrane International Mobility location: Cochrane Sweden

How did you first learn about Cochrane?
I first heard about Cochrane systematic review in a lecture: 'Volume-targeted versus pressure-limited ventilation in neonates" during a neonatal scientific conference in Poznan. I was really impressed by this study. However I was not involved in Cochrane research before I joined the Cochrane International Mobility Programme (CIM).

What was your experience with Cochrane International Mobility?
At the beginning of my CIM exchange I had an opportunity to complete Cochrane Interactive Training which gave me basic knowledge about systematic reviews and taught me how to conduct it. It was also great experience in terms of learning about overall research methodology. This I find definitely valuable if you are involved in evidence-based medicine. Later I was working on a systematic review on harms in Cochrane reviews on screening, which was led by the Director of Cochrane Sustainable Health Care. Last but not least, CIM is also an amazing opportunity to meet open-minded, interesting and hardworking scientist from other countries.

What are you doing now in relation to your Cochrane International Mobility experience?
 When I came back to Poland I joined DTA review about Continuous Glucose Monitoring in preterm neonates, led by Cochrane Sweden and Cochrane Netherlands. I am also going to attend workshop about DTA methodology in Sweden. My future plan is to continue collaboration with Cochrane Sweden especially in the fields of neonatology and sustainable healthcare.

Do you have any words of advice to anyone conserving a Cochrane International Mobility experience?
Just do it ;)



Friday, January 3, 2020

Podcast: Can people stop smoking by cutting down the amount they smoke first?

čet, 01/02/2020 - 13:28

There are more than 50 Cochrane Reviews of the effects of interventions to help people quit smoking; one of which investigates whether reducing smoking before quitting might be an alternative to stopping suddenly. It was updated in September 2019 and we asked lead author, Nicola Lindson, from the Cochrane Tobacco Addiction Group based in the University of Oxford in the UK to tell us about their latest findings.

The standard way that people are told to quit smoking is to smoke as normal until a quit day, and then stop using all cigarettes. However, this is daunting for many, and those who have tried it without success might like to try another way. Cutting down on cigarettes smoked before quitting may provide such an alternative, and so it’s important to know whether it is as effective as quitting abruptly.

Our review investigates this and we’ve found that there is moderate quality evidence that people who were asked to stop smoking all of their cigarettes at once were not more likely to quit than people who were asked to cut down their smoking before quitting. We had also wanted to explore whether cutting down to quit resulted in any adverse effects, such as cigarette cravings, difficulty sleeping, low mood or irritability; but very few studies provided this information, so it remains unclear.

We included 51 randomised studies in the review, involving more than 22,000 people who smoked tobacco. Most were adults, and they typically smoked at least 23 cigarettes a day at the start of the research. The studies compared people who were asked to cut down their smoking and then quit tobacco smoking altogether with either a group who did not receive any treatment to stop smoking, a group who were asked to stop smoking all at once, or a group who were asked to cut down their smoking in a different way. 

Reduction methods tested varied greatly across studies; with some simply asking participants to reduce the amount they smoked, while others provided detailed instructions or suggestions of how to go about it; some of which was face to face.

Looking deeper into the evidence, we found that people who cut down their smoking while using varenicline or a fast-acting form of nicotine replacement therapy (NRT), such as gum or lozenge, may be more likely to quit than those who cut down their smoking using a different medicine, or no medicine. We also found that giving people face-to-face support to cut down may help more to quit than if they are simply provided with self-help materials.

The take home message, therefore, is that asking people to cut down their smoking first may be a useful way to help people to stop smoking. Cutting down to quit whilst using fast-acting NRT or varenicline, and whilst receiving behavioural support may maximise people’s chances of success. Future well-conducted studies should focus on investigating whether cutting-down-to-quit may be more helpful for particular populations, and which ways of cutting-down-to-quit result in the highest quit rates.


Monday, January 6, 2020

Cochrane October - December 2019: Highlights from Q4

pon, 12/30/2019 - 15:49

Cochrane is for anyone interested in using high-quality information to make health decisions. Whether you are a doctor or nurse, patient or carer, researcher or funder, Cochrane evidence provides a powerful tool to enhance your healthcare knowledge and decision making. Our mission is to promote evidence-informed health decision-making by producing high-quality, relevant, accessible systematic reviews and other synthesized research evidence.

October to December 2019, was a busy quarter for Cochrane! Here we provide some highlights of the last quarter of the year.

Cochrane produces high-quality, relevant, up-to-date systematic reviews, and other synthesized research evidence to inform health decision making.

In May 2019 Dr. Karla Soares-Weiser joined us as the new Editor in Chief of the Cochrane Library. She shared with us her journey through Cochrane since 1995.

Cochrane was delighted to announce the publication of the new edition of the Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions following  extensive revision. The new edition includes: a  new chapter addressing issues around intervention complexity; a major new chapter on network meta-analysis; substantial developments in the area of risk of bias assessment; and new chapters addressing how authors can plan the review’s questions, comparisons and outcomes.

Cochrane strives to produce evidence that is accessible and useful to everybody, everywhere in the world. We create Plain Language Summaries,  provide podcasts from Cochrane Review Authors, translate our work into 15 languages, and provide  Cochrane Clinical Answers. This quarter we highlighted that you can follow us on your favourite social media platforms - Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, and Instagram. 

The unprecedented situation of civil unrest across Santiago, Chile led to the cancellation of the physical gathering of Cochrane's annual Colloquium. Whilst it has caused huge disappointment and inconvenience for hundreds of Colloquium delegates, we were impressed by the generosity and perseverance to make the most out of this sad situation by our members and supporters. In a fitting tribute to Cochrane community‘s spirit of resilience and collaboration, we held a  virtual #CochraneSantiago that was open to everyone. We shared 180 digital posters, close to 120 video oral presentations, and had many special presentations on equity in systematic reviews,  how to better disseminate evidence to diverse stakeholders, and on different elements of methodological diversity. All this content is remains freely available to everyone!

We also introduced Cochrane PICO search BETA, which  can help you find the most relevant Cochrane evidence to answer your research or clinical question. It allows you to search over 4,500 Cochrane intervention reviews published since 2015 by Population (or Patient or Problem), Intervention, Comparison, or  Outcome.

Only around 6% of the world’s population are native English speakers, while 75% of people don’t speak English at all. This means many people do not have access to high quality health information, because it is not readily available in a language that they understand. We were delighted to officially launch of  Biblioteca Cochrane - the Spanish portal of the Cochrane Library. We also highlighted Cochrane's multi-language activities in a series of short videos. We have published more than 29,000 translations of Cochrane plain language summaries and abstracts as of November 2019.

 Cochrane is the ‘home of evidence' to inform health decision making. We are building greater recognition of our work and becoming the leading advocate for evidence-informed health care.

Cochrane supported an AllTrials report updating the UK House of Commons Science and Technology Select Committee on rates of clinical trial reporting among universities and NHS trusts.

Through Cochrane Crowd, our Citizen Scientist platform, we introduced many people to Randomized Controlled Trials. The community screened also screened more than 100,000 records for the #ColloquiumChallenge2019!

Cochrane strives to a be a diverse, inclusive, and transparent international organization that effectively harnesses the enthusiasm and skills of our contributors, is guided by our principles, governed accountably, managed efficiently, and makes optimal use of its resources.

Getting involved in Cochrane’s work means becoming part of a global community. We were happy to help connect our members with Cochrane Groups across the world through the launch of the Cochrane International Mobility programme! We also expanded our organization by welcoming  Cochrane Dominican Republic and the Cochrane Sustainable Healthcare Field.

Karla Soares-Weiser, Cochrane Library’s Editor in Chief, outlined a new conflict of interest policy that is forthcoming in 2020 in a BMJ opinion piece. Cochrane is committed to independence, transparency, and integrity in healthcare research and minimizing the impact of conflicts of interest in the conduct of Cochrane Reviews. Although Cochrane’s current conflict of interest policy is stricter than most journals, we have revisited it recently with the aim of strengthening our approach to financial conflicts of interest and clarifying our position regarding non-financial interests.

Monday, December 30, 2019

BASCD Borrow Foundation Early Career Poster Award winners focused on the Wikipedia Collaboration of Dental Schools

pon, 12/23/2019 - 17:31

Su Min Lai and Laura Tan took home the  Borrow Foundation Early Career Poster Award in a poster competition at the annual conference of the British Association for the Study of Community Dentistry.

Su Min and Laura were the only undergraduate students to verbally present, and were the youngest presenters at the conference, making their achievement all the more remarkable. The students are from the University of Dundee and work with Cochrane Oral Health on the Wikipedia Collaboration of Dental Schools. The Collaboration's mission is to improve Wikipedia by making the articles more evidence-based. The poster set out the mission and ethos of the Collaboration, which to date has amended 287 Wikipedia articles in two languages.

Congratulations to Su Min and Laura, and to the hard-working student volunteers who give up their time to this project.

Monday, December 23, 2019

Cochrane seeks - Junior Systems Administrator

pet, 12/20/2019 - 13:32

Specifications: Full Time
Salary: Competitive
Location: London
Application Closing Date: January 6th, 2020 (At 12 Midnight GMT)

This role is an exciting opportunity to use your experience as a Junior Systems Administrator to make a difference in the field of health care research. 

The Junior Systems Administrator will support the smooth running of Cochrane’s infrastructure and systems used by Cochrane Central Executive (CET) members (approx. 100 people. They will support and troubleshoot local and remote computers managed by Informatics & Technology Services (ITS) department.

The successful candidate will be responsible for the following activities:

  • Provide frontline technical support to Cochrane Central Executive, investigating and troubleshooting issues efficiently communicating technical information where required in an accessible way to non-technical people.
  • Manage and maintain Cochrane IT infrastructure, systems and application software, network services and data on behalf of the Cochrane Informatics and Knowledge Management Department (IKMD).
  • Ensure enough IT support and provision for the Cochrane Central Executive by responding to technical queries and ensuring IT equipment is maintained and replaced according to agreed internal IT equipment guidelines.
  • Perform regular routine backup, maintenance and checks of the Cochrane ITS systems.
  • Maintain operational, configuration, security, or other standard operation procedure documentation for all ITS standard operation procedures to be held.
  • Provide second line technical support to non-Cochrane staff whose queries come through our central support service, through efficient and timely use of the help desk system whilst endeavouring to meet reasonable service standard resolution times wherever possible.

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:

  • Degree in computer science or equivalent experience
  • Experience helping to diagnose and solve computers systems (PC/Mac), and network problems
  • Excellent analytical and problem-solving abilities to identify and fix problems and security risks
  • Excellent organizational, collaboration and interpersonal skills
  • Ability to prioritize own tasks against project and team goals
  • Ability to multitask and prioritize work requirements
  • Able to work efficiently and effectively with a geographically-dispersed department and organization
  • Willingness to travel as required

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 with “Junior Systems Administrator” 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 from here
  • Deadline for applications: January 6th 2020 (12 midnight GMT)
  • Interviews to be held on:
  • Phone interviews between 6th and 13th January 2020
  • Face to face interviews on the 23rd or 24th January
Friday, December 20, 2019 Category: Jobs

Why consumer involvement in Cochrane research is so important

čet, 12/19/2019 - 19:40

Since its beginnings, Cochrane has involved healthcare consumers (the language is interesting but consumers are patients, care-givers, and family members and others) in producing new knowledge about healthcare treatments. The reasons for this are compelling. Consumers are the ultimate beneficiaries of all of Cochrane’s work. Our strapline is “Trusted evidence, informed decisions, better health”. Meaningfully involving patients is a key part of ensuring that we achieve our mission. This two minute video recorded for Cochrane Common Mental Disorders Review Group briefly sums up why we should all think about how we can involve consumers in our work.

Cochrane’s Statement of Principles for Consumer Involvement was adopted by the Cochrane Governing Board in 2017 and, amongst other things, says this: “Cochrane believes that the benefits of consumer involvement are best realised when consumers contribute throughout the process of production and dissemination of research.”

Cochrane’s author teams are at the forefront of producing the evidence that consumers increasingly rely on to make their healthcare decisions. There have been some inspiring examples of innovative work undertaken with consumers. You can hear Alex Pollock talk about how consumers were involved in shaping a Cochrane review here. And these resources – Involving People – have been designed to give author teams access to advice, a framework for thinking about involvement, and examples of how other people have done this complex but rewarding work.

Involvement can be a key part of Cochrane’s groups’ work too, from prioritisation to consumer peer review, and the new peer review policy more strongly emphasised the role of consumers. You can read a blog about what peer review feels like from a consumer perspective here.  Consumers are involved in the running of the organisation, from the Cochrane Consumer Network to the Cochrane Council. Learning from patients’ experiences and spreading information about Cochrane’s evidence is an important role for consumers too, see Cochrane UK’s Evidently Cochrane for example.

If you are thinking about involving consumers more in your work or are a consumer and want to get involved, here are 5 things you can do today!

  1. Subscribe to the Cochrane Consumer monthly news digest
  2. Join the the new International Network for Patient and Public Involvement in Health and Social Research
  3. Join the Cochrane Consumer Network
  4. Watch this video by Neal Haddaway talking about stakeholder involvement in evidence synthesis
  5. Follow these Twitter accounts @cochraneconsumr and @GlobalPPINet

For more support with involvement contact Richard Morley, Consumer Engagement Officer

Thursday, December 19, 2019

Request For Proposal - Professional Conference Organizer Global Evidence Summit 2, Prague, 4-8 October 2021

uto, 12/17/2019 - 21:14

In 2021, Cochrane in collaboration with Guidelines International Network, Campbell Collaboration and Joanna Briggs Institute, will host a Global Evidence Summit 2 (GES) in place of their annual organizational events. The four global organizing partners and the hosts, Czech National Centre for Evidence-Based Healthcare and Knowledge Translation (CEBHCKT), are now inviting Professional Conference Organizer’s (PCOs) to tender for the provision of event management services for its quadrennial event in 2021.

The GES brings together the world’s leading organizations in evidence-based practice to provide a multi-disciplinary and cross-cultural platform to discuss critical issues in health, education, social justice, climate change and clinical care and practice.

We plan to host a 6-day event comprising pre-conference workshops/symposia (1 day); the Global Evidence Summit (4 days) consisting of meetings, plenaries, workshops, poster and oral presentations and post-conference workshops/meetings (1 day).

The spirit of the GES is ‘Using Evidence. Improving Lives.’ It aims to:

  • advance the use of reliable research evidence in addressing some of the world’s most serious health and social challenges;
  • bring together multidisciplinary actors from the global evidence community;
  • facilitate communication and collaboration between all those working on the synthesis, dissemination and implementation of evidence
  • promote evidence-based decision-making worldwide;
  • strengthen ties between all partners and supporters within the partnership framework; and
  •  showcase the work of all partners and supporters with high-quality scientific presentations.

Click here for full detail


Please submit all information requested no later than Friday 31 January 2020 to:


Tuesday 17 December 2019 - Invitation to Tender forwarded to PCOs

Friday 31 January 2020 - Closing date for tender submission

Week commencing 10 February 2020 - Call with shortlisted Tenderers

Friday 28 February 2020 - Announcement of decision (subject to Contract negotiation)


It should be noted that the Appointment of the PCO and the awarding of this contract will not only be dependent on the fees quoted but will be dependent upon the proven ability of the PCO to have understood the requirements of the Summit and their ability, based on experience, to deliver the event.


Requests for further information or clarification of requirements may be directed to:

Please note that we reserve the right to advise, at our discretion, all parties issued with a request for proposal, of further information/clarification of tender requirements resulting from any enquiry.

Tuesday, December 17, 2019 Category: Jobs

Cochrane US Network's first in-person meeting - Dec 2019

uto, 12/17/2019 - 20:15

Cochrane US Network convened for their first in-person meeting on 10 – 11 December 2019 in Philadelphia, hosted by American College of Physicians, an affiliate center.  The meeting was well attended, with delegates representing 17 of the 21 member groups that comprise the US Network. This convening served as an opportunity for sharing information, networking, and discussing governance and strategic priorities for the US Network. 

US Network work groups reported on their activities and proposed priorities. Initial areas of work have involved:

  1. Developing an evidence package and dissemination strategy for a selection of systematic reviews on the management of opioid use during pregnancy and among neonates exposed in utero. The US Network has engaged the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists to inform this project.
  2. Defining consumer engagement and involvement as a priority for the US Network, with priority for identifying and promoting best practices for consumer engagement and involvement in systematic review production, knowledge translation and dissemination. Additionally, the US Network has a priority interest in gaining understanding of how consumers prefer to receive health information, what health information is most valuable to consumer decision-making, and consumer preferences for involvement in the research process.
  3. Examining opportunities for accelerating data curation and standardizing data to support interoperability and better use of data.

Meeting participants discussed governance of the US Network. Consensus was established among meeting participants on US Network membership, decision-making, an executive committee structure. Meeting participants also provided their input on priority areas of work for the US Network during the next twelve months. The list of priorities included raising awareness of Cochrane and the US Network (e.g., social media presence), focusing on strategic dissemination of Cochrane evidence, advocating for evidence and evidence informed health decision-making, and planning for a US-based conference to engage stakeholders and provide opportunities for training.

Following the internal convening of members, a meeting with stakeholders was held to gain their insight and input to US Network priorities. This session was also well attended, with delegates from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Environmental Protection Agency, National Library of Medicine, Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute and Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

The US Network will continue to convene via monthly virtual meetings and will plan a next in-person meeting later in 2020.

Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Living Systematic Review: Pharmacological treatments for psoriasis, network meta analysis

uto, 12/17/2019 - 11:43

In this interview we asked authors Dr Laurence Le Cleach and Emilie Sbidian to tell us more about this Cochrane Living Systematic Review: Systemic pharmacological treatments for chronic plaque psoriasis, network meta analysis

Tell us about this Cochrane Review...
Psoriasis is a frequent inflammatory skin disease affecting between 2 and 8% of the general population. Plaque psoriasis characterized by raised and well-demarcated areas of inflamed skin covered with silvery white, scaly skin is the most common form. Psoriasis affects deeply quality of life. There is currently no cure for psoriasis, but various treatments can help to control the symptoms; thus, long-term treatment is usually needed. About 20% to 30% of people with psoriasis have a moderate to severe form requiring a second-line therapy including phototherapy and conventional systemic agents. Biological agents are more recent systemic therapies.

The objectives of our review were to compare the efficacy and safety of conventional systemic agents for patients with moderate to severe psoriasis and to provide a ranking of these treatments according to their efficacy and safety by the mean of a network meta-analysis.

Our review included 140 studies (31 new studies for the update) and 51,749 participants. 

Is it the first iteration of this Living Systematic Review (LSR) or an update?
This review was published for the first time in December 2017. This version evolves this review into a LSR. This current version is both an update and first occurrence of the LSR.

How often will it be updated? And what will be included in the updates?
Search for study, selection, data extraction followed by inclusion of characteristics and risk of bias analysis for each newly identified trial will be performed each month. Every 3 months, each newly identified trial will be incorporated in the Network Meta Analysis.

Why is pharmacological treatments for psoriasis a good topic for a LSR?
This is a very good topic for LSR as numerous new trials assessing systemic treatments for moderate to severe plaque psoriasis are regularly published. It is demonstrated by the high number of new trials added between the first version published in December 2017 and this one published only two years later and the 42 identified ongoing studies identified in the present study.

Who will benefit from this LSR?
It is a major resource for guidelines teams who are encouraged to move to living guidelines methods in order to constantly adapt the recommendations to reflect the new evidence highlighted in the LSR.

Is this the first time you have worked on a LSR? How does the experience differ?
Yes, it is the first time. Moving to an LSR means we’ve had to define new ways of organization for both the author and the editorial team. This organization is an ongoing process for us. We have anticipated the new processes involved, but obviously we will face new ones in the coming months.

Thursday, January 9, 2020

Cochrane seeks - Planning & Performance Manager

čet, 12/12/2019 - 13:19

Specifications: Permanent, 80-100% Full Time Equivalent, flexible working patterns
Salary: £52,000 pro rata
Location: Flexible (options include working from Cochrane’s offices in London, UK or in Freiburg, Germany; or remotely from anywhere else)
Application Closing Date: 5 January 2020 Midnight GMT

This is an exciting opportunity to improve Cochrane’s planning and performance management capabilities as the organization completes its transformational Strategy to 2020 and enters a new strategic planning phase. The Planning & Performance Manager will hold responsibility for designing and implementing improved strategic and operational planning processes, supporting the Senior Management Team and departmental staff to build robust, measurable workplans through which delivery can be managed and achieved.

In this newly created position, you’ll also be required to design processes for, and then collect and provide analysis of, key organizational performance information. These processes should enable progress against strategic and operational objectives to be measured, evaluated, effectively communicated to internal and external stakeholders, and used as the evidence-base to inform further plans. In other words, you’ll be responsible for developing what Cochrane currently regards as a ‘missing link’ in its strategic infrastructure for operationalizing strategic plans.

We are looking for someone dynamic and self-motivated who is comfortable working independently, but also collaboratively with a diverse range of contacts across the world. The successful candidate will have:

  • Experience in a similar cross-functional role, or in project portfolio or programme management
  • Experience of developing and managing the implementation of planning, performance and evaluation processes, and of developing performance indicators and results frameworks
  • Outstanding communication skills in English, both written and in person, with the ability to synthesize and explain complex information to a range of audiences
  • Ability to rapidly establish credibility, and maintain positive relationships, with people and teams from a range of functional, professional, linguistic and cultural backgrounds, including those who are not familiar with planning processes and performance indicators

In return, Cochrane offers an exciting, international work environment, the opportunity to travel, and a competitive benefits package.

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 (Resume) along with a supporting statement to, with “Planning & Performance Manager” 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 from here
  • Interviews to be held early in January 2020
Thursday, December 12, 2019 Category: Jobs