The role and purpose of Evidence-Based Practice

The use of evidence-based practice (EBP) ensures that clinical practice is based on sound evidence and patients benefit as a result. Using EBP also results in more consistent clinical recommendations and practice across the health service.

The process of EBP is usually triggered by consultations with patients or clients that generate questions about the effects of treatment or care, the choice of diagnostic tests, the likely outcome of a disease or condition, or the background of a disorder. To undertake EBP, clinicians or managers need to start by asking questions about care, for example: ‘is this treatment effective?’ The process is then continued as evidence is accessed, appraised, and finally put into practice.

Read the following paper on how evidence-based practice helped a GP to diagnose gastroesophageal reflux as an unusual cause of persistent cough (in 10% cases). [5]