What is EBP?co.uk


What is EBP?
Problems with the Definition
Why have EBP?

The Five Stages of EBP
The Question?
Background Questions
Foreground Questions

Finding the Evidence

The Hierarchy of Evidence
Tips on finding the evidence

Acting on Evidence

Evaluation & Reflection

What is Evidence Based Practice?

Evidence based practice (EBP) has many definitions. The most widely cited definition of EBP is adapted from Sackett et al's definition of evidence based medicine (EBM). This states that EBM is:

"the conscientious, explicit and judicious use of current best evidence in making decisions about the care of individual patients. The practice of evidence-based medicine means integrating individual clinical expertise with the best available external clinical evidence from systematic research"            
                                                                                                                                  (Sackett et al, 1996)

The definition above, highlights the need to draw on both the professional's clinical experiential knowledge and the best external evidence. Neither is enough on its own. As Sackett and his colleagues point out, clinical practices become out of date if new evidence is not drawn upon. However, the clinician must be aware of what evidence is appropriate to integrate into their practice. This can prove to be a difficult and time-consuming task but it is an essential skill in implementing evidence based practice.

Problems with the above Definition

Sacket DL, Rosenberg WMC, Gray JAM and Richardson WS (1996). Evidence based medicine: what it is and what it isn't. British Medical Journal. 312 (13 January 71-72)

Top of Page

Copyright Morton and Morton 2003