Why we’ve come togethEr
Many Australians would be surprised to learn that most of the recommendations and guidelines that shape the health care they receive are not based on the latest high-quality research evidence or findings from clinical trials.
In many fields, rigorous clinical guidelines are only produced every 3 to 5 years, while research findings appear every month. This means that many patients may not be getting advice or treatment based on the latest evidence, but rather what was considered best practice whenever the relevant guidelines were last updated (sometimes up to 10 years earlier).
Australian clinical guidelines are developed by expert panels and based on rigorous systematic reviews of the relevant research, but most are out of date - primarily because guideline panels can’t keep up with the deluge of new findings being published by researchers around the world.
The widely referenced paper above was published in PLOS Medicine in 2010. Almost a decade later, the critical challenge to reliably aggregate and make sense of the results of an ever increasing number of research studies, compounded by the exponential accumulation of real-world data, remains largely undressed.