#1 Describe in your own words a clinical population based problem you would like to examine. With words and data, define and describe the population. Explain why you think it is important to address this problem.
Describe in your own words a clinical population based problem
Describe in your own words a clinical population based problem you would like to examine. With words and data, define and describe the population. Explain why you think it is important to address this problem. Write a clinical question using the PICO format. Recall, the acronym stands for population studied (P), intervention (I), comparison (C), and outcome (O). These are the key components of a well-focused question.
How can innovative application of health information technology improve population health and what are the benefits to patients and providers with meaningful use?
Without a well-focused question, it can be very difficult and time consuming to identify appropriate resources and search for relevant evidence. Practitioners of Evidence-Based Practice (EBP) often use a specialized framework, called PICO, to form the question and facilitate the literature search.1 PICO stands for:
- Patient Problem, (or Population)
- Comparison or Control, and
|Framework item:||Think about:||Example:|
|Patient Problem (or Population)||What are the patient’s demographics such as age, gender and ethnicity? Or what is the or problem type?||Work-related neck muscle pain|
|Intervention||What type of intervention is being considered? For example is this a medication of some type, or exercise, or rest?||Strength training of the painful muscle|
|Comparison or Control||Is there a camparison treatment to be considered? The comparison may be with another medication, another form of treatment such as exercise, or no treatment at all.||Rest|
|Outcome||What would be the desired effect you would like to see? What effects are not wanted? Are there any side effects involved with this form of testing or treatment?||Pain relief|
When forming your question using PICO, keep the following points in mind:
- Your Patient is a member of a population as well as a person with (or at risk of) a health problem. So, in addition to age and gender, you may also need to consider ethnicity, socioeconomic status or other demographic variables.
- A Comparison is not always present in a PICO analysis.
- Outcomes should be measurable as the best evidence comes from rigorous studies with statistically significant findings.
- An Outcome ideally measures clinical wellbeing or quality of life, and not alternates such as laboratory test results.