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What are clinical practice guidelines?

What are clinical practice guidelines?

Clinical practice guidelines (CPGs) have been defined "systematically developed statements to assist practitioners and patient decisions about appropriate health care for specific circumstances". (1)

CPGs, which have their origin in the evidence-based medicine movement of the 1980s, aim to improve the quality of health care. In particular they are intended to

• summarize and evaluate the evidence from published research studies
• reduce inappropriate variation in practice
• provide guidance for consumer and inform and empower patients
• • inform public policy
• support quality control, including audits of clinicians’ or hospitals’ practices
• identify gaps in knowledge and prioritize research activities (2)

In the field of rare diseases, CPGs meet the information needs of physicians and patients since they provide a systematic identification as well as a multidisciplinary evaluation of the relevant studies which often are "rare" e "spread".

National Centre for Rare Diseases develops CPGs in the field of rare diseases cooperating with the Italian National Guidelines System, research organizations, health professionals working at the local level of Italian National Health system. CNMR has also an active collaboration with patients and families associations.

1 Field MJ, Lohr KN (Eds). Clinical Practice Guidelines: Directions for a New Program, Institute of Medicine, Washington, DC: National Academy Press, 1990.
2 Davis D, Goldmann J, Palda VA (Eda). Handbook on Clinical practice guidelines Canadian Medical Association, 2007

Published 06-04-2011 in What are clinical practice guidelines? , last update 26-05-2011


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