Overview of the implementation of activities related to evidence-based practice in a broad representation of World Health Organization collaborating centers

Catalan Agency for Health Technology Assessment and Research
Record ID 32004000345
Catalan, English, Spanish
Authors' objectives:

The World Health Organization (WHO) current direction stresses the importance of adopting rational evidence-based decisions as a means to improve the performance of health systems.

The Department of Health Service Provision of WHO commissioned the Catalan Agency for Health Technology Assessment and Research (CAHTA) of Barcelona, Spain, to conduct a survey among selected WHO collaborating centers (WHO-cc) aimed at identifying the centers whose main activities are related to the production, adoption, utilization or dissemination of synthesized scientific evidence.

Authors' results and conclusions: The total response rate was 38.3%. The majority of participating WHO-cc considers that they have participated in activities related to EBP in the last 5 years. The most frequent EBP activities in all geographical regions were primary research, teaching activities, organizing conferences or promotion of EBP activities, while systematic reviews and clinical practice guidelines are less frequent. WHO-cc recommendations frequently occur at a local and national level of influence, and in lower terms, at an international level. Governments and the inter-governmental organizations are the main source of financing of WHO-cc independently of the geographical region but some combined different strategies of financement. Although the number of staff working full-time varies across WHO-cc, the majority of centers include multidisciplinary teams. The main areas of expertise are public health, epidemiology and health services research. The potential users of WHO-cc outputs are diverse and heterogeneous between geographical regions in terms of importance. Nevertheless, physicians and nurses are basically the most frequent intended users. Organizing conferences, seminars and meeting related to EBP are the main dissemination strategy followed by published reports and teaching activities. Most centers distribute their publications free of charge although some cases depend on the profile of the user or type of publication.
Authors' recommendations: The results are encouraging and show a greater potential collaboration of the WHO collaborating centers related to EBP ambit, from the existing up to the moment. The fact of including a detailed profile for each center will allow selecting specific centers for different types of collaborations. It should be noted that no information was obtained from South America (AMRO/PAHO-4) or countries such as India (SEARO). The possibility of elaborating an electronical version of the questionnaire and the fact that 80.8% of the WHO-cc participating in this study could receive the survey through electronical mail, can define this type of technology as a useful and practical tool for future collaborations.
Authors' methods: Cross-sectional study
Project Status: Completed
Year Published: 2002
English language abstract: An English language summary is available
Publication Type: Not Assigned
Country: Spain
MeSH Terms
  • Evidence-Based Medicine
  • World Health Organization
Organisation Name: Agencia de Qualitat i Avaluacio Sanitries de Catalunya
Contact Address: Antoni Parada, CAHTA, Roc Boronat, 81-95 (2nd floor), 08005 Barcelona, Spain, Tel. +34 935 513 928, Fax: +34 935 517 510
Contact Name: direccio@aatrm.catsalut.net / aparada@aatrm.catsalut.net
Contact Email: direccio@aatrm.catsalut.net / aparada@aatrm.catsalut.net
Copyright: Catalan Agency for Health Technology Assessment and Research (CAHTA)
This is a bibliographic record of a published health technology assessment from a member of INAHTA or other HTA producer. No evaluation of the quality of this assessment has been made for the HTA database.