EBP Seen as Key to Better Care

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Karen Utterback By Karen Utterback 
Former Vice President, Product Marketing and Strategy, McKesson (Retired)

Home Health Evidence-Based PracticeThe push for evidence-based practice (EBP) is not new, but it has fresh relevance in the face of today’s healthcare challenges. The EBP movement started in 1972 and gained significant momentum in the 1990s. Today, it’s seen as key to achieving better care at lower costs.

However, implementing EBP is not entirely straightforward. There are levels of evidence to be considered. Higher quantities of lower-quality research exist, but high-quality research is harder to come by. Other factors are also involved in EBP, including the clinician’s expertise and patient preferences. Our latest white paper addresses the need for home health evidence-based practice and states clearly that all three of these components must be present for evidence-based practice to be effective.

Indeed, what’s needed is a culture in which all aspects of EBP have the opportunity to influence clinical decisions. Most important, EBP must take place within the context of caring. In other words, this is not about applying the findings of a scientific article – it’s about medical professionals sorting through the scientific evidence and using their expertise to determine the value and applicability of many evidence-based resources.

Although no organizations currently review and develop clinical evidence specific to home care, guidelines from scientific literature, governmental agencies and professional organizations can certainly be adapted to home care patients. In addition, work on EBP has been done by CMS, the Home Health Quality Improvement National Campaign and the Collaboration for Home Care Advances in Management and Practice program.

To read “The Role of Evidence-Based Clinical Practice in Emerging Care Models of Homecare,” by Caroline J. Humphrey, RN, of CJ Humphrey Associates and myself, please click here.

Or to stay up to date with the latest news and insight from the home health and hospice industry by subscribing to the McKesson Homecare Talk blog or liking us on Facebook.

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