Evidence Based Practice involves "applying the best available research results (evidence) when making decisions about health care. Health care professionals who perform evidence-based practice use research evidence along with clinical expertise and patient preferences."
AHRQ Effective Health Care Program Glossary of Terms. Retrieved August 6, 2012 from http://effectivehealthcare.ahrq.gov/index.cfm/glossary-of-terms/?filterletter=e
There is a substantial gap between the best research evidence and clinical practice with potentally serious health consequences for patients. Key reasons for the research-practice gap include lack of time and skills needed for finding and appraising the evidence. Evidence based practice helps bridge that gap by providing strategies that facilitate finding and appraising research, and resources that pre-filter and synthesize research to make the process more efficient.
Evidence based practice includes five steps:
This guide focuses on the first three steps of evidence-based practice.
Strauss, S. E. (2011). Evidence-based medicine : How to practice and teach EBM (4th ed.). Edinburgh ; New York: Churchill Livingstone.