GRADE Evidence to Decision (EtD) frameworks: a systematic and transparent approach to making well informed healthcare choices. 2: Clinical practice guidelines
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Clinicians do not have the time or resources to consider the underlying evidence for the myriad decisions they must make each day and, as a consequence, rely on recommendations from clinical practice guidelines. Guideline panels should consider all the relevant factors (criteria) that influence a decision or recommendation in a structured, explicit, and transparent way and provide clinicians with clear and actionable recommendations. In this article, we will describe the Evidence to Decision (EtD) frameworks for clinical practice recommendations. The general structure of the EtD framework for clinical recommendations is similar to EtD frameworks for other types of recommendations and decisions, and includes formulation of the question, an assessment of the different criteria, and conclusions. Clinical recommendations require considering criteria differently, depending on whether an individual patient or a population perspective is taken. For example, from an individual patient's perspective, out-of-pocket costs are an important consideration, whereas, from a population perspective, resource use (not only out-of-pocket costs) and cost effectiveness are important. From a population perspective, equity, acceptability, and feasibility are also important considerations, whereas the importance of these criteria is often limited from an individual patient perspective. Specific subgroups for which different recommendations may be required should be clearly identified and considered in relation to each criterion because judgments might vary across subgroups. This article is a translation of the original article published in the British Medical Journal. The EtD frameworks are currently used in the Clinical Practice Guideline Programme of the Spanish National Health System, co-ordinated by GuíaSalud.
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