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Updated: 2 hours 41 min ago

Cochrane is seeking a new Co-ordinating Editor for the Colorectal Cancer Group- any location

Wed, 01/10/2018 - 18:31

We are looking for a new home for the Cochrane Colorectal Cancer Group (CRCG). In addition to the detection, treatment and monitoring of colorectal cancer, the Group’s scope also currently covers other abdominal surgery-related topics, including hernia and appendicitis.

The CRCG portfolio of reviews includes 116 active reviews and 65 protocols.

Applications are welcomed from individuals based anywhere in the world. Henning Keinke Andersen, the Group’s Managing Editor has indicated that he is willing to remain in post if appropriate.

We will accept applications from within the existing Cochrane community and beyond. Applicants should be aware of the following requirements:

  1. The Co-ordinating Editor should have experience of authoring and editing Cochrane Reviews, in addition to relevant content expertise.
  2. The Co-ordinating Editor will work with the current Editors for continuity with regards to securing funding for the activities of the Group, and completing the CRG re-accreditation process.
  3. The Co-ordinating Editor will be required to sign the Collaboration Agreement, and will need to demonstrate their capacity to commit at least 0.1 FTE per week to the activities of the Group, and preferably more.
  4. The Co-ordinating Editor will develop the Editorial Board for the group.

Read the guidance for the re-accreditation process.

Potential applicants should familiarise themselves with Cochrane’s Commercial sponsorship and Conflict of interest policies.

Individuals who are interested in exploring this opportunity are encouraged to speak with Karla Soares-Weiser, Deputy Editor in Chief (

To apply please send a cover letter responding to the numbered bullet points above, and a short Curriculum Vitae. The closing date for applications is 10th February 2018.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018 Category: Jobs

Cochrane seeks two Co-ordinating Editors for Cochrane Anaesthesia and Critical Care - any location

Wed, 01/10/2018 - 18:03

Cochrane is splitting Cochrane Anaesthesia and Critical Care (ACE) into two new groups: Cochrane Anaesthesia and Cochrane Critical Care. We are seeking two Co-ordinating Editors to lead these groups.

As of January 2018, two new groups will be created as a result of splitting the portfolio of the current ACE Group: Cochrane Anaesthesia and Cochrane Critical Care.

After 15 and seven years of service, respectively, as Co-ordinating Editors for the Cochrane ACE Group, Ann Moller and Nathan Pace have decided to step down. They will continue their involvement as Editors for the new groups. We thank Ann and Nathan for their contribution as Co-ordinating Editors to Cochrane.

We are looking to appoint two new Co-ordinating Editors for Cochrane Anaesthesia and Cochrane Critical Care.

Jane Cracknell, Cochrane ACE’s Managing Editor (based in the UK), and Janne Vendt, Cochrane ACE’s Information Specialist (based in Denmark), have both indicated that they are willing to stay on in support of the two new groups, as appropriate.

The CRCG portfolio of reviews includes 207 active reviews and 47 protocols.

We will accept applications from within the existing Cochrane community and beyond. Applicants should be aware of the following requirements:

  1. The Co-ordinating Editor should have experience of authoring and editing Cochrane Reviews, in addition to relevant content expertise.
  2. The Co-ordinating Editor will work with the current Editors for continuity with regards to securing funding for the activities of the Group, and completing the CRG re-accreditation process.
  3. The Co-ordinating Editor will be required to sign the Collaboration Agreement, and will need to demonstrate their capacity to commit at least 0.1 FTE per week to the activities of the Group, and preferably more.
  4. The Co-ordinating Editor will develop the Editorial Board for the group.

Read the guidance for the re-accreditation process 

Potential applicants should familiarise themselves with Cochrane’s Commercial sponsorship and Conflict of interest policies

Individuals who are interested in exploring this opportunity are encouraged to speak with Karla Soares-Weiser, Deputy Editor in Chief.

To apply please send a cover letter responding to the numbered bullet points above, and a short Curriculum Vitae. The closing date for applications is 10th February 2018.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018 Category: Jobs

Cancer Council Australia seeks Project Manager, Clinical Guidelines Network - Sydney

Mon, 01/08/2018 - 23:38

Exciting opportunity to work as Project Manager in Clinical Practice Guideline Development

Sydney based; Full-time, permanent role

The Project Manager, Clinical Guidelines Network works within the Clinical Guidelines Network team under the direction of the Head, Clinical Guidelines Network to manage multiple clinical practice guideline projects in an online environment. The ideal candidate will have high-level project management, liaison and editing skills and a high level understanding of evidence-based medicine and clinical practice guideline development.

As Project Manager, Clinical Guidelines Network your key responsibilities will be:

- Project-managing the development and maintenance of numerous cancer-based clinical practice guidelines

- Engage and liaise with multidisciplinary working parties, consisting of expert advisors and consumers, and external stakeholders in regards to our clinical practice guidelines

- Managing the content and editorial process of guideline projects in an online environment

- Facilitate the ongoing content updating and review process of completed guidelines.

This position is open to Australian citizens and residents with permission to work full-time in Australia.

Download full job description 

To apply: 

Email with your resume and a covering letter outlining your skills and experience by Sunday 14th January 2018.

For further information contact Jutta Thwaites on 02 8063 4116.

No recruiters please.

Tuesday, January 9, 2018 Category: Jobs

Cochrane Colloquium Edinburgh 2018 - call for abstracts and workshops open as of 5 January

Fri, 01/05/2018 - 06:20

The opportunity to present workshops, special sessions, oral presentations and posters opens on 5 January 2018. This is your chance to be part of the 25th annual Cochrane Colloquium. The theme of the event is ‘Cochrane for all – better evidence for better health decisions’ and we look forward to receiving submissions on the sub-themes of ‘producing evidence’, ‘making evidence accessible’ and ‘advocating for evidence’.

The 2018 Colloquium will be held in Edinburgh at the International Conference Centre in Scotland from 16-18 September 2018. It will hosted by Cochrane UK and is expected to attract up to 1200 delegates.

The Colloquium will be a Patients Included event. One of the key aims of the event is to increase the involvement of patients, carers and family members (healthcare consumers) in Cochrane’s work. As such, we ask that all abstracts consider their impact on, and relevance to, patients and other healthcare consumers. We particularly welcome abstracts that are co-designed, co-produced and/or co-presented with patients or other healthcare consumers.

View the call for abstracts

View the call for workshops 

The deadline for submissions is 2 March 2018.


Friday, January 5, 2018

Cochrane seeks HR Officer - London, UK

Thu, 12/21/2017 - 20:11

Specifications: Full Time/Part Time
Salary: Competitive
Location: London
Application Closing Date: 19th January 2018

Cochrane is a global independent network of health practitioners, researchers, patient advocates and others, responding to the challenge of making the vast amounts of evidence generated through research useful for informing decisions about health. We do this by identifying, appraising and synthesizing individual 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. We want to be the leading advocate for evidence-informed health care across the world.

This is a new and exciting role for an individual passionate about HR and who would relish to provide first line HR support and advice to Cochrane team across a range of HR topics, policies and processes. The role will predominantly be the point of contact for colleagues in relation to HRenquiriesand provide ongoing support to the existing HR Managers.

The successful candidate will need to be extremely well organized to manage a high workload. We are looking for an experienced HR Officer with previous experience in this role with a proven collaborative approach to support HR activity across Cochrane.

If you would like to apply for this position, please send a CV along with a supporting statement to with “HR Officer” 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 together with salary expectations.

Deadline for applications: (12 midnight GMT) 19th January 2018

Thursday, December 21, 2017

The Recommended Dose: Episode 8 with Jullian Elliott

Wed, 12/20/2017 - 15:06

Lead for Evidence Systems at Cochrane & Head of Clinical Research in the Department of Infectious Diseases at the Alfred Hospital and Monash University

Ray’s guest this week is Julian Elliott - the well-travelled Australian doctor, researcher and big picture thinker who aims to use new technology to radically improve health systems and access to evidence for people around the world – whether they’re in high or low income countries.

Julian is something of a futurist. So at a time when all kinds of websites, apps and wearable devices are ingesting our health and personal data, Ray asks him what the consequences of this ever increasing deluge of data might be. Should we be concerned about how our personal data will be used or hopeful about the promise all this new information holds for understanding and improving human health?

Julian also shares his insights from his early work as a doctor in the Northern Territory and as a HIV specialist in Cambodia. He explains how these experiences continue to inspire his work to bring people, processes and technology together to realise better global health.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Covidence continues improvements to streamline Cochrane Reviews

Tue, 12/19/2017 - 09:48

Covidence is one of Cochrane’s recommended tools to support you in some of the most labour-intensive stages of your systematic review, saving up to 35% of researcher time. Covidence allows your team to upload search results, screen abstracts and full text, complete data collection, conduct risk of bias assessment, resolve disagreements and export data into RevMan or Excel. Covidence is free to use for all Cochrane reviews, and is designed to be intuitive and user-friendly.

Want to know more about Covidence?

Give it a try and let us know what you think!

Visit Covidence

The Covidence platform continues to evolve, with recent product updates advancing the tool towards the vision of a world where answers to questions about health and other fields of human wellbeing are accurate, up to date and accessible. The Covidence team is committed to engaging with the Cochrane community and continuing to make improvements that are user-focused. Significant improvements have been made recently to data extraction and to importing.

Recent updates

Data validation
Covidence allows for several types of data points to be collected: integers, decimals, percentages, and free text. The platform now automatically checks that the data entered to a cell matches the expected data type, saving time later on in double checking and cleaning data!

Custom text fields now integrate to template
Covidence has a streamlined data extraction form with many of the standard elements pre-programmed, minimising time research teams have to spend on constructing their forms. You can see a walkthrough of creating a data extraction form in Covidence here.

Previously when a customised text field was added, it was limited to a study-by-study basis. Now, when added to the review template, the custom text field will be carried forward along with all the other customised elements of the template, including the baseline characteristics table, interventions characteristics table, and outcomes.

You can read more about custom text fields here.

Organisation accounts for Cochrane Review Groups
The Covidence team is in the process of creating organisational accounts for each Cochrane Review Group. These group accounts will enable editorial staff to be able to create reviews at any time in the process, including while the review is in editorial or prior to protocol registration. The editorial staff will also be able to monitor review activity within their own groups. Reviews will be clearly grouped according to their Review Group association.

Have some ideas on how to continue improving Covidence?
Thank you for voicing your feedback and user needs, these are an invaluable input into our product roadmap and prioritisation process. The Covidence team would love to hear more from you! Please contact Covidence Support at if you’d like to share some ideas, have a chat, or just say hello!

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

New collaborative website launched by UoM Cochrane Review Groups

Mon, 12/18/2017 - 15:20

new website has been launched to highlight the work and impact of the three Cochrane Review Groups (CRGs) hosted by the University of Manchester (UoM).

Cochrane is an international organisation that produces high quality evidence summaries to inform decisions about health and health care interventions. CRGs support Cochrane’s primary function: the preparation and maintenance of systematic reviews. There are more than 50 CRGs, based in research institutions worldwide, each focused on a specific topic of health research. 

The University of Manchester’s Faculty of Biological, medical and health proudly hosts the following three CRGs:

This new site features the UoM CRGs’ key successes, publication highlights and latest updates. Visit the site for further information:

Monday, December 18, 2017

Two PhD studentships available at Plymouth University - Plymouth, UK

Mon, 12/18/2017 - 01:51

Two PhD studentships are available full-time or part-time within the Plymouth University Peninsula Schools of Medicine and Dentistry (PUPSMD). PUPSMD are seeking to attract PhD candidates of outstanding ability to join their exciting and rapidly expanding programme of internationally-rated research. Applicants may apply for one or more of the three projects listed.

Closing date for applications: midnight Sunday 28 January 2018

Complete job posting and information on how to apply


Monday, December 18, 2017 Category: Jobs

Featured Review: Antioxidants for preventing and reducing muscle soreness after exercise

Wed, 12/13/2017 - 23:00

Taking antioxidant supplements to reduce muscles soreness after exercise could have almost no effect, according to a new  Cochrane Review

People engaging in intense exercise often take antioxidant supplements, such as vitamin C and/or E or antioxidant-enriched foods, before and after exercise in the anticipation that these will help reduce muscle soreness. In a new review published in the Cochrane Library, researchers  looked at the evidence from 50 studies. These all compared high-dose antioxidant supplementation with a placebo and their participants all engaged in strenuous exercise that was sufficient to cause muscle soreness. Of the 1089 participants included in the review, nearly nine out of ten of these were male and most participants were recreationally active or moderately trained.

The researchers found that high dose antioxidant supplementation, thus in excess of the normal recommended daily dose for antioxidants, does not appear to reduce muscle soreness early on after exercise or at one, two, three or four days after exercise.  At all times, the slight differences in the average pain scores found for participants taking supplements compared with those taking placebos were smaller than the difference that people would consider important or even notice. Only nine studies reported on adverse effects and only two found adverse effects.

The evidence for muscle soreness is considered to be 'moderate' or 'low' quality. This was mainly because the majority of studies had aspects that could have affected the reliability of their results and in some cases because of variation in the results of the studies.

Dr Mayur Ranchordas, senior lecturer in sport and nutrition and exercise metabolism at Sheffield Hallam said: "Many people take antioxidant supplements or antioxidant-enriched foods before and after exercise in the belief that these will prevent or reduce muscle soreness after exercise.

"Some athletes are strategically taking antioxidant supplements in order to accelerate recovery during periods of intense competition rather than taking them every day. For example, in professional football, when there is a period of fixture congestion, a team may play three matches in an eight day period (e.g. Premier League fixtures Saturday to Saturday separated by a mid-week Champions League fixture), dietary antioxidants could be strategically used to reduce inflammation and muscle soreness. This would allow the players to recovery more quickly in preparation for the next match. In professional cycling, a Tour de France rider may take antioxidant supplements to accelerate recovery after each stage, in order to recover more quickly for the following day's stage.

"Various types of antioxidants supplements could be used to achieve this and some examples include tart cherry juice, blackcurrant nectar and pomegranate juice. Our review found that antioxidant supplementation may very slightly reduce muscle soreness in the first three days after exercise, however, these reductions were so small that they were unlikely to make any difference."

Dr Joseph Costello, senior lecturer in exercise physiology at the University of Portsmouth said: "Delayed-onset muscle soreness, or “DOMS,” affects many people after exercise and can impair future athletic performance. It usually peaks one to four days after exercise. Taking antioxidant supplements is one of the commonest strategies used by people who hope to reduce the risk of DOMS after engaging in strenuous physical activities. The findings from this review indicate that antioxidant supplementation does not appear to reduce muscle soreness at one, two, three or four days after exercise. These findings have important implications for athletes who use, or are considering the use of, antioxidant supplementation."

Friday, December 15, 2017

Cochrane Australia seeks Program Lead, Evidence Innovation - Melbourne, Australia

Tue, 12/12/2017 - 16:36

Exciting opportunity to build an international research consortium and dramatically improve the use of research evidence in healthcare systems around the world 

Cochrane is the world’s leader in independent, trustworthy health evidence. Cochrane Australia is part of the School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine at Monash University and one of 13 Cochranecentres worldwide that promote the use of research evidence in health decision-making and support the global Cochrane network of over 36,000 researchers to produce independent, high-quality evidence.

The Opportunity

The Program Lead is responsible for overall management of the development and coordination of an international research consortium and submission of funding proposals to expand Cochrane’s ‘Evidence Innovation’ work program. This program aims to transform the way research evidence and data are translated into action and individual health impact around the world.

The Program Lead will take a leading role in the next phase of growth for this innovative and exciting research program. Assisted by senior research leaders and a Project Manager at Cochrane Australia, they will develop research concepts into detailed research plans; identify, engage and manage consortium partners; manage multiple workgroups in Australia, UK and elsewhere to develop a coherent, exciting and fundable program of research; and coordinate engagement with leading Australian and international health funders, including submission of several large funding proposals. An ongoing role in the transition to and further development of the expanded research program will be an option.

You will have:


  • Relevant post-graduate qualifications and/or extensive relevant experience
  • Demonstrated extensive experience in leading and motivating a team of professionals to achieve objectives
  • Highly-developed relationship management skills, including the ability to interact, influence and negotiate at senior levels
  • Excellent project management skills with a proven record of successfully managing all aspects of medium-large projects, in accordance with agreed standards, timeframes and budgets
  • Excellent consulting skills, including the ability to devise practical solutions to complex issues
  • Outstanding communication skills, including experience in developing professional communication material and delivering effective presentations
  • Excellent analytical, evaluation and research skills


  • Experience working in the evidence-based health field
  • Experience engaging successfully at senior levels with major health research funders, including government and philanthropy
  • This position will initially be a fixed-term6 month contract and will be located at St Kilda Road, Melbourne.

To express your interest in this consultancy opportunity and receive an information package, please contact Assoc Prof Julian Elliott on

All enquiries will be held in confidence.

For more information or to apply online visit Monash Jobs.

Closing date: Thursday 22 December 2017

Tuesday, December 12, 2017 Category: Jobs

Website for the 2018 Cochrane Colloquium is now live

Mon, 12/11/2017 - 18:00

The website for the 25th annual Cochrane Colloquium, taking place in Edinburgh from 16-18 September 2018, is now live.

The Colloquium is Cochrane’s annual health conference, bringing people together from around the world to discuss research into important global health questions and promote evidence-based health care.  

It will be a Patients Included event that is co-designed, co-produced and co-presented by healthcare consumers and where everyone’s input is valued equally.   

Registration is scheduled to open in February 2018. Visit the website to get the latest information on key dates, sponsorship opportunities, and activities in the historic host city, with more details to be announced in the coming months.

Monday, December 11, 2017

Dominican Republic will now have free access to Cochrane Reviews

Thu, 12/07/2017 - 18:28

We are happy to announce that the Ministry of Public Health (Vice-ministry of Quality Guarantee) of the Government of the Dominican Republic has subscribed to the Biblioteca Cochrane Plus. This national subscription will provide free open access to all Dominican citizens, approximately ten million people.

Cochrane Reviews provide reliable and unbiased evidence through the identification, assessment, synthesis, and dissemination of research findings. Biblioteca Cochrane Plus houses Spanish translations of more than 7000 systematic reviews, and this access will provide students, practitioners, researchers, and patients with one-click access to this leading resource in evidence-based research.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

The Recommended Dose: Episode 7 with Sarah Moss

Wed, 12/06/2017 - 19:40
EPISODE 7: SARAH MOSSAcclaimed British novelist

Hailed as one of the best British novelists writing today, Sarah Moss is our very special literary guest on TRD this week. She joins Ray to explore the intersection between fiction and health, and to talk about the doctors, patients, parents and families she portrays so vividly in her five highly acclaimed novels.

The role of the writer, Sarah says, is to ‘ask hard questions beautifully’. She certainly does this through her own exploration of individual lives and struggles within clearly defined social structures past and present. From the first female doctors to forge careers against incredible odds in the 19th century to the challenges of working mums and stay-at-home dads in the 21st century - the terrain she covers is immense.

Here she talks to Ray about the research and reflection that goes into illuminating both historical and contemporary medical worlds that share common themes and raise critical questions about the way we live today. Her comments on the British National Health Service (the NHS) are timely and heart-felt.

She also shares her thoughts on the diverse origins of her storylines, which include both her personal experiences of early motherhood and her political response to news reports from warzones around the globe.

Sarah’s novels include The Tidal Zone (Granta 2016), Signs for Lost Children (Granta 2015), Bodies of Light (Granta 2014), Night Waking (Granta 2011) and Cold Earth (Granta 2009). She also published a non-fiction book called Names for the Sea: Strangers in Iceland (Granta 2012), which explores her experiences as a resident of Reykjavik.

Image: courtesy of the University of Warwick

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Cochrane in Chile: a new centre for evidence-based decision making in health care

Mon, 12/04/2017 - 16:06

Cochrane’s Iberoamerican Network is delighted to announce the formation of a new Cochrane Centre to enhance health decision-making in Chile.

The Chilean Cochrane Centre is the result of an exciting collaboration between five institutions:

  • Facultad de Odontología, Universidad de Chile;
  • Centro Evidencia UC, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Santiago;
  • Centro de Capacitación, Investigación y Gestión para la Salud Basada en Evidencias (CIGES), Universidad de La Frontera (UFRO), Temuco; 
  • Unidad de Medicina Basada en Evidencia, Departamento de Salud Pública, Universidad de Valparaíso, Valparaíso; and,
  • Universidad Católica de la Santísima Concepción, Concepción.

Cochrane Chile will promote evidence-informed health decision-making by supporting and training new Chilean authors of Cochrane Reviews, as well as working with clinicians, professional associations, policy-makers, patients, and the media to encourage the dissemination and use of Cochrane evidence.

The Cochrane Chile Centre is part of Cochrane, a global independent network of researchers, professionals, patients, carers, and people interested in health. Cochrane works with collaborators from more than 130 countries and in 14 languages to produce credible, accessible health information that is free from commercial sponsorship and other conflicts of interest.  Cochrane’s work is recognized as representing an international gold standard for high quality, trusted information.

Cochrane Chile will be co-ordinatedand led by its Director, Gabriel Rada, who will offer methodological support, mentoring, and supervision to the Cochrane Chile Centre. He says this is a hugely exciting opportunity: “The launch of Cochrane Chile is very important, both to Chile and globally. Producing and increasing the dissemination of the best available information on health care is critical for clinicians and patients everywhere in the world.”

The new Centre is part of The Cochrane Iberoamerican Network. Director, Xavier Bonfil added, “It is a wonderful opportunity for Chilean researchers to have more direct contributions in order to produce and disseminate Cochrane knowledge. I believe that this Centre will be a cornerstone to advocate evidence-informed practice in Chile and Cochrane’s formal presence in the country will help spread the mission of Cochrane’s work.”

Cochrane’s CEO Mark Wilson, warmly welcomed today’s news, “I am very proud to welcome a new Cochrane Centre in Chile. The Centre is made up of an outstanding group of collaborators from around the country and I am confident that they will make Cochrane evidence even more accessible and useful for all those who need it in Chile. In 2019 Santiago will host Cochrane’s annual global meeting and this new Centre reflects the confidence we have in Cochrane Chile’s new dynamic team.”

For further information, please contact,
Jo Anthony
Senior Media and Communications Officer, Cochrane 
M +44(0) 7582 726 634 or

About Cochrane

Cochrane is a global independent network of researchers, professionals, patients, carers, and people interested in health. Cochrane produces reviews which study all of the best available evidence generated through research and make it easier to inform decisions about health. These are called systematic reviews.  Cochrane is a not-for profit organization with collaborators from more than 130 countries working together to produce credible, accessible health information that is free from commercial sponsorship and other conflicts of interest. Our work is recognized as representing an international gold standard for high quality, trusted information.

If you are a journalist or member of the press and wish to receive news alerts before their online publication or if you wish to arrange an interview with an author, please contact the Cochrane press office:

Thursday, December 7, 2017

The Recommended Dose: Episode 6 with Prathap Tharyan

Mon, 11/27/2017 - 23:00

Psychiatrist and would-be international DJ Prathap Tharyan joins Ray from his home in India this week to explore a fascinating fraction of his work, life, and philosophy.

Prathap’s wide-ranging agenda reflects a decidedly down-to-earth and original take on understanding and improving the human condition. Be it tending to victims of the Boxing Day tsunami, ensuring humanistic care for the homeless, or working with Wikipedia to get better health information to millions around the globe – people and evidence are always at the very centre of his many and varied activities.

Prathap is a leading advocate for evidence-based approaches in Asia, and his work with people in the midst of humanitarian crises has consistently shown that good intentions are no substitute for good evidence.

Monday, November 27, 2017

Featured Review: Virtual reality for stroke rehabilitation

Thu, 11/23/2017 - 16:08

Many people after having a stroke have difficulty moving, thinking, and sensing. This often results in problems with everyday activities such as writing, walking, and driving. Virtual reality and interactive video gaming therapy involves using computer-based programs designed to simulate real-life objects and events. This may have some advantages over traditional therapy approaches as they can give people an opportunity to practice everyday activities that are not or cannot be practiced within the hospital environment and patients may spend more time in therapy as the activity might be more motivating.

A team of Cochrane authors based in Australia, Canada, and United States worked with Cochrane Stroke to determine the efficacy of virtual reality compared with an alternative intervention or no intervention on upper limb function and activity and on gait and balance, global motor function, cognitive function, activity limitation, participation restriction, quality of life, and adverse events. 72 studies involving 2470 people after stroke were included.

This Cochrane Review found that the use of virtual reality and interactive video gaming was not more beneficial than conventional therapy approaches in improving upper limb function but may be beneficial in improving upper limb function and activities of daily living function when used as an adjunct to usual care (to increase overall therapy time). There was insufficient evidence to reach conclusions about the effect of virtual reality and interactive video gaming on gait speed, balance, participation, or quality of life. There was a trend suggesting that higher dose (more than 15 hours of total intervention) was preferable as were customised virtual reality programs; however, these findings were not statistically significant.

“Virtual reality is a rising popular trend that extends into clinical settings, including stroke rehabilitation,” says Kate Laver from the Department of Rehabilitation, Aged and Extended Cae at the Flinders University in Australia and the lead author of the Cochrane Review. “We first published this Cochrane Review in 2011 and then updated it in 2015. This latest update adds 35 more studies to the evidence base, almost doubling the previously included number of studies. Clinicians who currently have access to virtual reality programs should be reassured that their use as part of a comprehensive rehabilitation program appears reasonable, taking into account the patient's goals, abilities, and preferences.”

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Feature Review: What factors influence the provision of care by skilled birth attendants in low- and middle-income countries?

Tue, 11/21/2017 - 14:46

New Cochrane evidence synthesis highlights the many factors that influence the care provided by skilled birth attendants

In low- and middle-income countries, many mothers still die during childbirth. Women are encouraged to give birth in health facilities rather than at home so they can receive care from skilled birth attendants. A skilled birth attendant is a health worker such as a midwife, doctor, or nurse who is trained to manage a normal pregnancy and childbirth, and refer the mother and newborn when complications arise.

A team of Cochrane authors based in Norway, South Africa,and Uganda worked with Cochrane Effective Practice and Organization of Care to identify factors that can influence skilled birth attendant’s ability to provide quality maternity care. 31 qualitative studies conducted in Africa, Asia, and Latin America were included that explored the views, experiences, andbehaviours of skilled birth attendants. Participants were skilled birth attendants including doctors, midwives, nurses, auxiliary nurses and their managers. The search covered studies published before November 2016

This Cochrane evidence synthesis found that many factors influence the care that skilled birth attendants can provide to mothers during childbirth. Factors include access to training and supervision; staff numbers and workloads; salaries and living conditions; and access to well-equipped,well-organisedhealthcare facilities with water, electricity, and transport. Other factors that may play a role include the existence of teamwork and of trust, collaboration, and communication between health workers and with mothers. Skilled birth attendants reported many problems tied to these factors.

“This synthesis highlights the everyday realities of a health worker, working in sometimes difficult circumstances in a low or middle-income countrysetting,while trying to provide care for mothers and babies,” says Susan Munabi-Babigumira, the lead author of the Cochrane evidence synthesis. “More needs to be done to address the human resource and health system infrastructural challenges that prevent health workers based at health facilities in low- and middle- income country settings from providing good quality maternity care. This synthesis is also relevant for an international audience since it addresses the need to build resilient health systems to improve health outcomes. We hope the findings in this review can be used to design strategies to improve the quality of care for mothers and theirbabies,and improve health services in general.”

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Seeking Senior Research Assistant for NIHR Cochrane IBD Project - Preston, UK

Mon, 11/20/2017 - 16:22

Hours: Part time (0.5 FTE)
Basis: Fixed term contract for 12 months
Closing Date: 15th January 2018
Interview Date: TBC

The School of Medicine at the University of Central Lancashire wishes to appoint two Senior Research Assistants to support the research and knowledge transfer activities of Dr Morris Gordon. The main research interests of Dr Morris Gordon are systematic review and evidence synthesis, in post clinical and educational contexts. The post holder will undertake Cochrane systematic reviews as part of an NIHR funded project under the direction of Dr Gordon.

With experience of systematic review work and specific Cochrane experience, you will have knowledge and understanding of the work of Cochrane Collaboration and the nature of systematic reviews.

You will have postgraduate training in an appropriate field to at least Masters level, including epidemiology, public health and medical specialities. A PhD or Professional Doctorate qualification are not essential requirements, but would be desirable.

You must possess excellent communication skills; have an ability to work within a multidisciplinary team and show initiative and innovation. With a professional and flexible approach, you will have a commitment to the missions and values of the University.

Informal enquiries are welcomed - please contact Morris Gordon, Head of Professionalism and Careers, via email in the first instance

Applicants need to meet all essential criteria on the person specification to be considered for interview. This position is based in Preston.

Please apply online via or by contacting Human Resources on 01772 892324 and quoting the reference number. CVs will not be considered unless accompanied by a completed application form.

Monday, November 20, 2017 Category: Jobs

The Recommended Dose: Episode 5 with Paul Glasziou

Fri, 11/17/2017 - 04:24
Episode 5: Professor Paul Glasziou
Professor of Evidence-Based Medicine, Bond University, Robina, Queensland, Australia;
and part-time General Practitioner

Paul Glasziou (aka The Surfing Professor) joins Ray this week to share insights from his stellar career as both a family doctor in Brisbane and a global evidence guru at Oxford and Bond Universities. He explores big picture health issues like overdiagnosis, overtreatment and the implications of genomic testing, alongside important questions for our everyday health - like how you can find and use evidence and put it to good use when visiting or choosing your own doctor or specialist.

At one point Ray braves a chilly Gold Coast beach at the crack of dawn to find Paul and his close colleague/best surfing buddy Professor Chris Del Mar catching waves, spotting whales and agreeing that fun is actually a surprisingly essential part of serious research work. 

Friday, November 17, 2017