McMaster University

McMaster University

Sunita Kheterpal Successfully Defends MSc Thesis on EBM Tools

Published: April 4, 2016

Sunita Kheterpal's thesis defense for her MSc. in Global Health on the implementation of OrthoEvidence, an evidence-based knowledge dissemination portal.

Summary of her work:

Background: There is limited research on how web-based, point-of-care, evidence-based medicine (EBM) tools, such as evidence summaries, are being implemented and used in developing countries.
Objectives: To investigate accessibility, use, and impact of an online EBM knowledge dissemination portal in orthopaedic surgery. To explore whether receiving daily targeted evidence summaries results in more frequent use of an EBM tool compared with receiving general weekly reports. To identify and explain the barriers and benefits of a point-of-care resource in the Indian context.
Methods: Forty-four orthopaedic surgeons in Pune, India, were provided free access to OrthoEvidence (OE), a for-profit, online EBM knowledge dissemination portal. Participants were subsequently randomized to an Intervention group receiving daily targeted evidence summaries or a Control group receiving general weekly summaries. This study employed an explanatory sequential mixed methods design that incorporated two questionnaires, OE usage data, and semi-structured interviews to gain insight into the surgeons’ usage, perceptions and impact of OE.
Results: There were no observable differences in OE usage between the Intervention and Control groups. OE was deemed to be comprehensive, practical, useful, and applicable to clinical practice by the majority of surgeons. The exit survey data revealed no differences between groups’ perceptions of the OE tool. Semi-structured interviews revealed barriers to keeping up with evidence that included limited access to relevant medical literature (limited internet connection, lack of time, minimal access to medical journals) and limited incentive to keep up with it (limited decision-making powers for residents, textbook-based residency curriculum, lack of research methods knowledge, limited context-specific research). Changing trauma practices at the hospital were noted following the intervention.
Recommendations: The practice of EBM and the use of point-of-care tools in India can be promoted by investing in adequate electronic infrastructure (improvements to internet access) and by integrating EBM into training programs and surgical cultures.

Key words: Evidence-Based Medicine; Evidence-Based Orthopaedics; Knowledge Dissemination Portals; Knowledge Translation; Mixed Methods; Pre-Appraised Resources; Qualitative Study; Residency Training

Please click on the following link to access the entire thesis:

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