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AHRQ EPC Program Helps Health Systems Use Evidence

Series Overview

The AHRQ Evidence-based Practice Center (EPC) program is committed to partnering with organizations to make sure its evidence reports can be used in practice. Many of its evidence reports have been used by clinical professional organizations to support the development of clinical practice guidelines or by Federal agencies to inform their program planning and research priorities.

As part of AHRQ's commitment to accelerating the spread of evidence-based best practices across learning health systems, the EPC Program wants to help learning health systems use the evidence from its evidence reports to improve patient care. This webpage showcases projects by the EPC program to help make evidence reports more useful for health systems.

Learning Health Systems Panel

In 2018, the AHRQ EPC program started a project to enhance learning health systems' adoption of evidence to improve the quality and effectiveness of patient care. To do this, it is convening a learning health systems panel to guide the development of products and tools that will help health systems use findings from EPC evidence reviews. The learning health systems panel is generating ideas, providing feedback, and making improvements to products and tools. In 2020, learning health systems represented in the panel will implement and evaluate materials. Get more details about the Learning Health Systems Panel.

Methods Reports

EPC and Health Systems Partnership Pilot Project Reports (2018)

Health systems want access to the best evidence to provide high-quality care to patients. However, they have limited time and resources to identify and incorporate evidence into practice. Therefore, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) Evidence-based Practice Center (EPC) program has been increasingly interested in advancing the use of EPC systematic reviews by health systems. To support this, the EPCs conducted pilot projects where they engaged with health systems to develop and evaluate a dissemination product based on an existing EPC report.

Nine pilot projects were conducted. EPCs identified healthcare decisionmakers and worked with them to identify their information needs. Projects piloted a range of methods and tools to facilitate the dissemination or implementation of information from evidence syntheses including: informational videos, cyberseminars, decision aids, clinical pathways, evidence-to-decision frameworks, and interactive tools to explore the underlying evidence. An evaluation form was developed for EPCs to enter data about their projects. A summary report will provide an overview of findings and results of the evaluation. Results are forthcoming from these projects.

Related Links

Borsky AE, Flores EJ, Berliner E, Chang C, Umscheid CA, Chang SM. AHRQ Evidence-based Practice Center Program: Applying the Knowledge to Practice to Data Cycle to Strengthen the Value of Patient Care. Journal of Hospital Medicine. 2019. 

Guise JM, Savitz LA, Friedman CP. Mind the Gap: Putting Evidence into Practice in the Era of Learning Health Systems. J Gen Intern Med. 2018.