Evidence services

Cochrane Australia has a strong reputation nationally and internationally for our work in evidence synthesis, knowledge translation and training. We provide a wide range of evidence services for clients big and small across Australia, the region and beyond.

Our expertise includes:

  • literature searching, critical appraisal and risk of bias, methods of statistical and narrative synthesis, complex reviews and using GRADE principles to interpret evidence and derive recommendations
  • translating knowledge from research into improvements in health care and health policy, working with policymakers, clinicians, researchers and consumers
  • capacity building in how to find, evaluate, interpret and use research evidence for researchers, clinicians and policymakers.

We conduct and provide guidance on finding, evaluating and synthesising research evidence, including:

  • Systematic reviews and meta-analysis 
  • Overviews of systematic reviews 
  • Evidence maps
  • Methodological reviews of systematic reviews, overviews and guidelines 
  • Critical appraisal of systematic reviews (ROBIS) and guidelines (AGREE) 

We facilitate and advise on translating research into healthcare practice and policy, including:

  • Prioritisation of consumer, clinical and policy questions where research is needed, or needs to be implemented
  • Design and evaluation of strategies to increase use of evidence in practice and policy  
  • Stakeholder consultation workshops, deliberative dialogues and guideline development group meetings

We provide tailored training in how to find, synthesise and use health research evidence, including: 

  • Commissioning and conducting systematic reviews
  • Appraising and interpreting systematic reviews
  • Use and interpretation of GRADE and creating summary of findings tables
  • Undertaking complex reviews and overviews of systematic reviews
  • Advanced search techniques 

Consult us about your evidence needs:

To find out more about how we can help with your evidence needs, contact either of Cochrane Australia's Co-Directors - Steve McDonald at steve.mcdonald@monash.edu or 03 9903 0370 or Sally Green at sally.green@monash.edu or 03 9903 0945.

Our work on GRADE is led by the Melbourne GRADE centre, based at Cochrane Australia. For enquiries about any aspect of GRADE, please contact Sue Brennan at melbourne@gradeworkinggroup.org

Examples of our recent work

Evidence synthesis:

We regularly work with groups including the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) and the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care (ACSQHC), to produce and review a wide range of evidence syntheses. Some recent examples include:

  • systematic review of association between different levels and patterns of alcohol consumption and long-term cognitive impairment (for NHMRC) (PubMed)
  • systematic review of spinal manipulation in children under 12 years of age (for Safer Care Victoria) (Report)
  • scoping review of implementation initiatives and interventions to improve care of women with heavy menstrual bleeding (for ACSQHC)
  • methodological review of the 'Deprescribing cholinesterase inhibitors and memantine in people with dementia' guideline
  • two systematic reviews for the Australian Guidelines for the Prevention and Control of Infection in Healthcare
  • systematic review of safe level of gluten for people with coeliac disease (for Coeliac Australia)
  • overview report of systematic reviews that include Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander populations 
  • AGREE appraisal of the 'Secondary prevention of vascular disease in type 2 diabetes' guideline
  • methodological review of the 'PSA testing and early management of test-detected prostate cancer' guideline
  • updated systematic review (in partnership with Monash Centre for Occupational and Environmental Health) of additional evidence on wind farms and human health (for NHMRC)
  • overviews of aromatherapy, naturopathy and herbalism (as part of the review of the Australian Government Rebate on Private Health Insurance for Natural Therapies).

Knowledge Translation:

We work with state, national and international policy organisations, health professional groups, healthcare services, researchers and others to support translation of research evidence into improved health care and health policy. We have recently: 

  • developed an implementation strategy for ACSQHC Clinical Care Standards
  • provided methodological guidance to the Indonesian National Evidence Summit on Maternal Mortality
  • facilitated GRADE processes for guidelines developed by the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners 
  • provided methodological guidance for guideline development at the World Health Organization
  • led development of Cochrane‚Äôs Knowledge Translation Strategy
  • developed tools to measure capacity for use and uptake of research in policymaking

Education and training:

We have provided tailored training for a range of organisations including: Alfred Health, Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care (ACSQHC), Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA), Dairy Australia, Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ), National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) and National Prescribing Service (NPS).