Reporting Items for Updated Clinical Guidelines: Checklist for the Reporting of Updated Guidelines (CheckUp)
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BACKGROUND: Scientific knowledge is in constant development. Consequently, regular review to assure the trustworthiness of clinical guidelines is required. However, there is still a lack of preferred reporting items of the updating process in updated clinical guidelines. The present article describes the development process of the Checklist for the Reporting of Updated Guidelines (CheckUp). METHODS AND FINDINGS: We developed an initial list of items based on an overview of research evidence on clinical guideline updating, the Appraisal of Guidelines for Research and Evaluation (AGREE) II Instrument, and the advice of the CheckUp panel (n = 33 professionals). A multistep process was used to refine this list, including an assessment of ten existing updated clinical guidelines, interviews with key informants (response rate: 54.2%; 13/24), a three-round Delphi consensus survey with the CheckUp panel (33 participants), and an external review with clinical guideline methodologists (response rate: 90%; 53/59) and users (response rate: 55.6%; 10/18). CheckUp includes 16 items that address (1) the presentation of an updated guideline, (2) editorial independence, and (3) the methodology of the updating process. In this article, we present the methodology to develop CheckUp and include as a supplementary file an explanation and elaboration document. CONCLUSIONS: CheckUp can be used to evaluate the completeness of reporting in updated guidelines and as a tool to inform guideline developers about reporting requirements. Editors may request its completion from guideline authors when submitting updated guidelines for publication. Adherence to CheckUp will likely enhance the comprehensiveness and transparency of clinical guideline updating for the benefit of patients and the public, health care professionals, and other relevant stakeholders.
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