Skip to Main Content

Evidence-Based Medicine Library Guide

Finding the Evidence in the Practice of Evidence-Based Healthcare

Purpose of this guide

This LibGuide is intended to lead you through the process of finding information (evidence) in the practice of Evidence-Based Healthcare. For more information on Evidence-Based Healthcare, consult the reading lists at the end of the guide.

UCT has established an Evidence-based  Healthcare Programme (EBHCP) with the aim to coordinate "the support provided to students, research staff as well as policy developers interested in utilizing EBHC principles to improve health service delivery".

Evidence Synthesis

"Evidence Synthesis is a type of research method that allows researchers to bring together all relevant information on a research question. This can be useful to identify gaps in knowledge, establish an evidence base for best-practice guidance, or help inform policymakers and practitioners". (Centre for Evaluation)

 "Evidence Synthesis refers to any method of identifying, selecting, and combining results from multiple studies" (Cornell University Library).

 Types of Evidence Syntheses include systematic reviews, literature reviews, scoping reviews, rapid reviews and umbrella reviews.

Definition of Evidence-Based Medicine

“Evidence-Based Medicine is the integration of best research evidence with clinical expertise and patient values"

(Sackett and others, 2000. Evidence-based medicine: how to practice and teach EBM. 2nd ed. Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone)


      The EBM Triad. Florida State University. College of Medicine.                                         

5 Step EBM Model

The practice of EBM involves a multi-step process (sometimes called the five A's) of identifying the best evidence and then evaluating it for validity, importance and applicability.
ASK                     Formulate an answerable clinical question
ACCESS              Search for evidence - use the library!
APPRAISE           Critically appraise studies
APPLY                 Apply evidence to patient care
ASSESS              Evaluate performance
It is in the first two steps of this process that the library can be of assistance to you, helping you with keywords and finding the best evidence.             

Other guides