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How to turn systematic literature reviews into useful access tools - 5 practical tips


By: Camilo Castañeda
MD, Neurologist
Project director

# 1 Make them to high quality standards

Since 2014 we have the IETS methodological manuals based, in turn, on international documents such as those of the Cochrane collaboration.


If you want your systematic review of the literature (SRL) to be taken into account, You cannot leave out any of the databases that are indicated there. Further, don't forget to do a good quality assessmentWe suggest using tools such as the Cochrane Collaboration, SIGN and GRADE.


# 2 Use to power an economical model

Tell in a systematic, analytical and critical way everything that is published about a disease or a treatment already is not sufficient. The system needs to know what the cost-effectiveness of your new product is compared to what is already implemented, or what its budget impact will be when it enters the market and a payer's finances.


# 3 Use it to tell a good story not just technical data

We often see how many of the results of these studies are not used to their full potential. Telling the technical data is important, but it is much more to make it clear to the doctor what will be the impact and practical and tangible benefit that their patients will obtain when using their product. Use RSL to construct these arguments.


Something similar happens with payers. You can take the results of the RSL to illustrate the big picture. Let me explain, payers often focus on the short term. With the results of an RSL you can make him see what happens in the medium and long term when he does not intervene in time. In many cases, what looks like a higher expense at the beginning it is reflected in significant savings in the medium and long term. This is telling a good story!


# 4 Ground the data to the reality of the context

We have all had the difficulty of not finding local published data. However, in Colombia we have databases such as the RIPS or the DANE population and mortality registries that allow an approach to the local epidemiology of the disease. Compare the international data with the figures from these databases, in many cases You will discover inputs to talk about underreporting or you will find valuable data on its geographical distribution, by sex, by age and by EPS. If you want to know more about this do not miss What data and analysis can we get from the RIPS?


# 5 Make useful but objective comparisons

In many cases with data from the RSL that show international experience, and from local databases, you will be able to build arguments about the need to diagnose the disease and have better records. By analyzing this data, Access limitations will become evident for many of the patients, as well as what mechanisms have worked in other countries to improve it (eg, rare and high-cost diseases). Remember that the healthcare system will not try to fix a problem unless it first understands that you have a problem.

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