Thursday, July 05, 2007

Q&A as peer-reviewed journal

Q&A services support clinicians by offering clinically relevant information with minimal effort. One of my most frequent moans (aside from middle-lane hoggers on the motorway) has been the poor sharing of answered questions.

Many of our questions are dealt with 'sorry, we found no evidence', which may seem a poor answer, but clinicians seem to be happy with these. However, a number also receive more complex answers with multiple evidence sources.

Why not create a journals to formalise these answers? Why not have our answer followed by a 'commentary' by a clinician (be it a generalist or specialist)? The format of the journal 'Evidence-Based Medicine' springs to mind (see for an example). This has the abstract followed by a commentary. See below for truncated image.


Martin Gerken said...

Well, I don't thinks this will works as a print journal.
I would like to see a search engine for all these evidence-based Q&A services.


jon said...

Hi Martin,

I was really attempting to make it a print journal, just online (like, say, Open Medicine).

As I alluded to in my post there is poor sharing of clinical questions, even though thousands are answered every day. Also, there is little open debate as to the way forward with Q&A.

If clinicians/info specialists were able to get a publication for their efforts it would provide significant motivation - so aiding the sharing of clinical questions.

As for a search engine of Q&A. TRIP contains, to the best of my knowledge, the widest collection on EB clinical answers of any resource. A user of TRIP can restrict the answers to just Q&A if they wish.