January 2013 - Internet Resources Digest


Evidence-based practice and policy in LMIC

AIHA Internet Resources Digest


This issue is devoted to internet resources on evidence-based practice and policy in health care and social work in low– and middle-income countries. „Although there is still some resistance to the evidence-based medicine movement, evidence-based health care has now become widely accepted and adopted. …Wherever health care is provided and used, it is essential to know which interventions work, which do not work, and which are likely to be harmful. This is especially important in situations where health problems are severe and the scarcity of resources makes it vital that they are not wasted.” (From : Chinnock P, Siegfried N, Clarke M (2005) Is Evidence-Based Medicine Relevant to the Developing World? PLoS Med 2(5): e107)

International Projects and Organizations

The Effective Health Care Research ConsortiumThe Effective Health Care Research Consortium

The Consortium activities include: Preparing and updating Cochrane Reviews about the effects of health care relevant to low-income and middle-income countries, Identifying approaches to ensure dissemination and use of the results of systematic reviews in decision

The Consortium focuses on two main areas:

  • Reliable, up-to-date, scientifically defensible and relevant evidence in malaria and tuberculosis, child health, maternal health, and health systems;
  • Effective dialogue and influence between research, policy, and practice communities in public and private sector.


WHO Evidence Informed Policy NetworkWHO Evidence Informed Policy Network (EVIPNet)

EVIPNet promotes the systematic use of health research evidence in policy-making. Focusing on low and middle-income countries, EVIPNet promotes partnerships at the country level between policy-makers, researchers and civil society in order to facilitate both policy development and policy implementation through the use of the best scientific evidence available. VIPNet comprises networks that bring together countrylevel teams, which are coordinated at both regional and global levels. EVIPNet country teams and expert members provide opportunities for:

  • identifying priority policy issues and questions;
  • checking the quality of available systematic reviews, guidelines, and other relevant research results to help identify and/or formulate policy options that better address health systems issues. Country teams may consider how best to support the necessary changes to the behaviour of those involved in the implementation of the policy at all levels (policy makers, public health managers, care-givers, community health workers, and communities of users of the health system).



Evidence-informed policy-making

SURE is a mechanism to support WHO to strengthen evidence-informed policy-making in Africa. Supporting the Use of Research Evidence
(SURE) for policy in African health systems is a collaborative project that builds on and supports the Evidence-Informed Policy Network (EVIPNet) in Africa and the Region of East Africa Community Health (REACH) Policy Initiative. The project involves teams of researchers and policymakers in seven African countries and is supported by research teams in three European countries and Canada.

SURE will contribute to strengthening, supporting and evaluating EVIPNet in Africa (in Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Ethiopia, Mozambique and Zambia) and the REACH Policy Initiative (in Uganda).

SURE objectives:

  • Produce relevant, reliable, accessible and timely research syntheses
  • Develop and evaluate the effectiveness of five strategies for improving access to and use of research evidence in policy development:
  • User-friendly formats for research syntheses
  • Clearing houses for research syntheses and policy relevant research
  • Rapid response mechanisms to meet policymakers’ needs for research evidence within short time frames (hours or days)
  • Deliberative forums involving policymakers and researchers with the involvement of civil society and the general public
  • Supporting civil society’s and the general public’s access to and use of research evidence
  • Develop capacity for evidence-informed health policy development in Africa
  • Evaluate collaborative initiatives between policymakers and researchers when using the above and other strategies to support evidence-informed health policy


CEBHAThe Collaboration for Evidence Based Health Care in Africa (CEBHA)

The Collaboration for Evidence Based Healthcare in Africa (CEBHA) will focus on African health problems, research priorities and needs. The specific objectives are:

  • Collaboration for sustainability
  • Capacity building and training
  • Research, monitoring and evaluation
  • Curriculum development and integration.
  • Evidence development
    Access to evidence based resources.
  • Dissemination and implementation of evidence
  • Communication, advocacy and networking


The Cochrane Collaboration in low- and middle-income countries. VideoThe Cochrane Collaboration in low- and middle-income countries. Video

As part of a series of events to mark The Cochrane Collaboration's 20th Anniversary, a series of videos has been commissioned focusing on the ideas, achievements and people that have contributed to the Collaboration's growth since 1993. The second video, "The Cochrane Collaboration in low and middle-income countries" is now live on the Collaboration's YouTube channel, and on the 20th Anniversary website. This video focuses on the need for, achievements in, and challenges of producing, disseminating, and implementing systematic reviews in resource-challenged settings.


HIV Prevention Trials NetworkHIV Prevention Trials Network

The HIV Prevention Trials Network is a worldwide collaborative clinical trials network that develops and tests the safety and efficacy of primarily non-vaccine interventions designed to prevent the transmission of HIV. The HPTN research agenda is focused primarily on the use of antiretroviral therapy for HIV Prevention; treatment and prevention of sexually transmitted infections; treatment of substance abuse, particularly injection drug use; behavioral risk reduction interventions and structural interventions to reduce HIV transmission and acquisition.

HPTN studies evaluate new HIV prevention interventions and strategies in populations and geographical regions that are bearing a disproportionate burden of infection. This is intended to facilitate rapid scale-up of proven interventions and to have the greatest possible
impact on the pandemic. In addition, the HPTN has refined and expanded its expertise in the development and validation of tools for the early detection of HIV infection.

All HPTN studies are conducted in close partnership with the community.


CDCFCochrane Developing Countries Field

The Developing Countries Initiative was instituted as a response to a lack of appropriate health care evidence present in some countries around the world. The fewer resources are available to a country, the more is relevant, conclusive, reliable evidence on health care interventions needed. The goal of CDCF is to increase the production, access, and use of systematic reviews by those in DCs, to ensure that equitable, relevant knowledge is produced by disadvantaged populations, and available to them.



AIDSTAR-OneAIDSTAR-One - HIV Prevention Knowledge Base

AIDS Support and Technical Assistance Resources, Sector I, Task Order 1 (AIDSTAROne) provides rapid technical assistance to the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and U.S. Government (USG) country teams to build effective, wellmanaged, and sustainable HIV and AIDS programs.

AIDSTAR-One provides targeted assistance in knowledge management, program implementation support, technical leadership, program sustainability, and strategic planning. The HIV Prevention Knowledge Base is a collection of research and tools to help you find what works in prevention. This up-todate collection of resources will help you identify and adapt evidence-based prevention strategies for your program.


3ieThe International Initiative for Impact Evaluation (3ie)

The International Initiative for Impact Evaluation (3ie) works to improve the lives of people in the developing world by supporting the production and use of evidence on what works, when, why and for how much. 3ie finances high-quality impact evaluations and campaigns to inform better programme and policy design in developing countries. 3ie Systematic Reviews examine the range of available evidence regarding a particular intervention. 3ie is partnering with the Campbell Collaboration (C2) in the production of systematic reviews.

From the web-site you can search the 3ie's database of policy briefs, systematic reviews and impact evaluations. 3ie's impact evaluation database features over 600 impact evaluations conducted in low- and middleincome countries.


RHL​The WHO Reproductive Health Library (RHL)

RHL is published by the Department of Reproductive Health and Research at WHO Headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland. RHL takes the best available evidence on sexual and reproductive health from Cochrane systematic reviews and presents it as practical actions for clinicians (and policy-makers) to improve health outcomes, especially in developing countries. Main content in RHL:

  • Full text of selected Cochrane systematic reviews
  • Independent expert commentaries on single or a collection of related Cochrane reviews - RHL commentaries
  • Practical advice on implementation of findings of each Cochrane review - RHL practical aspects
  • A complete list of interventions evaluated in RHL, classified by the degree of their effectiveness - Effectiveness summaries
  • A set of training videos to help clinicians master details of manual and surgical procedures - RHL videos
  • A set of published journal articles and other materials to help understand and practice evidence-based sexual and reproductive health care - Methodological resources.

Also available in French, Spanish and in Russian.


eLenaThe WHO e-Library of Evidence for Nutrition Actions (eLENA)

The Library helps governments overcome one of the major challenges in fighting malnutrition: the vast, and often conflicting, array of evidence and advice that exists on effective, preventive and therapeutic nutrition interventions. The online eLENA project does this by prioritizing and presenting the latest advice on tackling the three main forms of malnutrition: undernutrition, vitamin and mineral deficiencies, and overweight and obesity.

Also available in French and in Russian.


The Malaria in Pregnancy Library

The Malaria in Pregnancy (MiP) Library is a regularly updated, comprehensive bibliographic database of published and unpublished literature relating to malaria in pregnancy, including a trial registry of planned and ongoing trials, for use by scientists, policy makers, funding agencies, industry and other interested parties. The MiP Library meets the demand for a current and international resource on malaria in pregnancy and
is a product of an international collaboration between scientists working on MiP (the Malaria in Pregnancy Consortium).



The objective of PDQ-Evidence is to make relevant high quality research easy to find for anyone with a health system question. It is a non-commercial database, developed by health system researchers, designers and programmers from three continents.PDQ is funded in part by the EU 7th framework and Norad.

The database is maintained by the Evidence -Based Medicine Unit, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile. PDQ-Evidence was developed and is maintained by systematically searching PubMed and other databases for relevant systematic reviews and overviews of reviews. It includes systematic reviews and overviews of systematic reviews; primary studies included in those; and structured summaries.

In addition, it includes translations of the titles and abstracts of included records to facilitate searching in different languages and it is continually updated by searching multiple sources of systematic reviews and overviews of reviews.



SHARE is a continuously updated repository of synthesized research evidence addressing topics related to HIV/AIDS. SHARE consists of several components: an online searchable database of HIV-relevant systematic reviews; periodic email updates; access to user-friendly summaries; and peer relevance assessments.

SHARE database is not currently available to the general public and is only available to those involved in a research study evaluating the database. After the study is completed, registration will be free for anyone. 18 user-friendly summaries of systematic reviews that were completed as part of a scoping review about counselling, case management and health promotion interventions for people living with HIV/AIDS are available in English and in French.


Evidence-Based TB DiagnosisEvidence-Based Tuberculosis Diagnosis

Recognizing the growing importance of evidence-based TB diagnosis and policy making, the Stop TB Partnership’s New Diagnostics Working Group has created a new subgroup on Evidence Synthesis for TB Diagnostics. This subgroup supports the development of new systematic reviews, facilitates the development and dissemination of evidence summaries on new diagnostics, and actively promotes their use in guideline and policy development processes.

This website is one of the contributions of the Evidence Synthesis subgroup, it is a comprehensive resource for evidence syntheses, policies, guidelines and research agendas on TB diagnostics


Global Health Interventions​Global Health Interventions: A Review of the Evidence

Global Health Interventions: A Review of Evidence is an effort to provide policyrelevant and accessible information on the efficacy (the "what works") of key global health interventions, including the strength of the evidence.

It is a web-based tool that summarizes findings for a range of prevention and treatment interventions designed to reduce the risk of death and disease in the developing world. Information is presented by health condition and in several formats, including a narrative overview, a key findings table, and a logic model with risk factors, interventions and outcomes.


PACTRPan African Clinical Trials Registry

The Pan African Clinical Trials Registry (PACTR) is a regional register of clinical trials conducted in Africa. The registry is an African initiative serving the needs of Africans. It provides a platform where clinical trials can be registered prospectively. In addition, it also provides a searchable, electronic database of planned trials and trials currently in progress.


Violence Prevention: the Evidence

WHO and Liverpool John Moores University launched Violence prevention: the evidence, an eight-part series of briefings on the evidence for interventions to prevent interpersonal and self-directed violence. By spotlighting evidence for the effectiveness of interventions, Violence prevention: the evidence provides clear directions for how violence prevention funders, policy makers and programme implementers can boost the impact of their violence prevention efforts.


LMIC Filters

Developed by the Norwegian Satellite of the Cochrane Effective Practice and Organisation of Care Group. Filters for MEDLINE (Ovid), EMBASE (Ovid), PubMed and CENTRAL (Web) to help identify studies relevant to LMIC. Filters are based on the World Bank list of countries (2009), classified as low-income, lower-middle-income or uppermiddle-income economies.


TRIP Database

Trip is a clinical search engine designed to allow users to quickly and easily find and use high-quality research evidence to support their practice and/or care.

As well as research evidence clinicians can also search across other content types including images, videos, patient information leaflets, educational courses and news. You can search on Trip and use the developing world filter to return documents tagged as being suitable. The developing world button is available via the ‘More’ drop-down option under each result.


Tools and Training Materials

​Toolkit for Progressive Policymakers in Developing Countries

The aim of this toolkit is to identify lessons and approaches from EBP in the UK which may be valuable for developing countries.
The approaches and tools presented are based on the assumption that the reader is a progressive policymaker in a developing country, and one who is interested in utilising EBP. The intended audience is made up of policymakers and policy advisers in the public sector, rather than those working within the private sector or civil society.


SUPPORT tools for evidence-informed health policymaking

This open access publication provides a set of tools that can be used by those involved in finding and using research evidence to support evidence-informed health policymaking. The series addresses four broad areas: supporting evidence-informed policymaking; identifying needs for research evidence; finding and assessing research evidence; and, going from research evidence to decisions. It contains 18 guides that are structured using a set of questions that can help to guide the use of research evidence to inform health policy decisions. Taken together, the guides can contribute to greater awareness of the complexities related to the role of evidence in policymaking processes, while creating opportunities for improvement and capacity development related to supporting the use of research in decision making.


HINARI Training Modules

Module 7.2. Evidence-based practice resources for HINARI users
Module 7.2. Evidence-based practice resources case studies

Evidence-Based Medicine in Developing Countries Syllabus

It includes: Introduction to EBM in developing countries; Other resources for EBM in developing countries; Sample scenarios, searches, completed worksheets and CATs for EBM in developing countries.


Journals and Newsletters

South African Cochrane Centre Newsletter

The SACC is the only Cochrane Centre in Africa and serves as the reference Centre for individuals in the following African countries who would like to contribute to The Cochrane Collaboration: Benin, Botswana, Cameroon, Comoros, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gambia, Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.


HIV Prevention Update

From AIDSTAR-One. The HIV Prevention Update provides a representative sample of summaries and abstracts of recent articles on global HIV prevention issues from a variety of scientific, peer-reviewed journals. It also includes state-of-the-art program resources, such as tools, curricula, program reports, and unpublished research findings.


Evidence & Policy: A Journal of Research, Debate and Practice

Evidence & Policy is the first peer-reviewed journal dedicated to comprehensive and critical assessment of the relationship between research evidence and the concerns of policy makers and practitioners, as well as researchers.


Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice

The Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice is an international scholarly journal which is concerned with the evaluation and development of clinical practice across medicine, nursing and the allied health professions. Of particular interest to the Journal are submissions on all aspects of clinical effectiveness and efficiency including evidence-based medicine, clinical practice guidelines, clinical decision making, clinical services organization, implementation and delivery, health economic evaluation, health process and outcome measurement and new or improved methods (conceptual and statistical) for systematic inquiry into clinical practice. Access to fulltext through HINARI.


AIHA Internet Resources Digest Forthcoming Topics [Provisional]

  • Telemedicine
  • Open Access Initiatives
  • Resources on Pediatrics
  • Patient Information Services
  • Rational Use of Medicines

AIHA Related Resources

Internet Resources Digest,July 2012 - Evidence-based Nursing

Internet Resources Digest, May 2012 - Health Technology Assessment

Internet Resources Digest, March 2012 - Critically Appraised Topics (CATs) and Patient-oriented Evidence that Matters (POEMs)

Internet Resources Digest, January 2012 - Point-of-Care Tools

Internet Resources Digest, December 2011 - Organizing Evidence-based Journal Clubs

Internet Resources Digest, August 2012 - Clinical Pathways

About the AIHA Internet Resources Digest

The Internet Resources Digest — previously called the Health Resources Digest — is distributed free of charge as a service of the American International Health Alliance’s Learning Resources Project thanks to the generous support of the American people through the US President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR). The Learning Resources Project is implemented through AIHA’s HIV/AIDS Twinning Center Program, which is funded through a cooperative agreement with the US Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA).

The Internet Resources Digest is compiled by Irina Ibraghimova, PhD, Library and Information Management Specialist
HealthConnect International (www.healthconnect-intl.org). The contents are the responsibility of AIHA and do not necessarily reflect the views of PEPFAR, HRSA, or the United States Government.

If you have a suggestion for a Digest topic, or would like to contribute information about Internet resources, please contact ibra[at]zadar.net.

Back issues of the Internet Resources Digest for 2011-2012 are archived at www.healthconnect-intl.org/resources.html.

If this document is to be redistributed or posted on another Web site, we request that it be posted in full without alteration, and credit is given to the AIHA as the source of the document.


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