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22 Building capability, leadership and a home for evidence based medicine in ireland
  1. Niamh O’Rourke1,
  2. Eve O’Toole2
  1. 1Department of Health, Dublin, Ireland
  2. 2Health Service Executive NCCP, Dublin, Ireland


Objectives Whilst the EBM movement and the approach to putting evidence into practice has grown throughout the world, its adoption in Ireland has been somewhat fragmented, with no unifying network to connect the practitioners, educators and students of EBM.

Our aim is to establish a hub for evidence based medicine in Ireland and to promote evidence based practice throughout the healthcare system in Ireland, with the ultimate goal of improving patient outcomes.


  • To create a hub for EBM in Ireland through the establishment of Evidence Based Medicine Ireland (EBMI);

  • To build capability and leadership for EBM in Ireland;

  • To establish a network of EBM practitioners;

  • To establish a network of EBM educators;

  • To create international links and access to world class experts in EBM.


  • Baseline research on current EBM teaching in Ireland, including literature review, interviews with international experts and a national survey with third level institutions.

  • Stakeholder engagement on the development of a competency framework for EBM education for health professionals in Ireland.

  • Training of EBM trainers at CEBM Oxford.

  • Training in EBM for healthcare staff, in conjunction with CEBM.

MethodThere is a focus on capacity building, sustainability, identifying change agents and implementation of evidence into practice. The establishment of EBMI will commence with the development of a network of practitioners and educators identified through the EBM workshop held in November 2017.

A grant was awarded by the Naji Foundation for training and capacity building. The Naji Foundation is dedicated to promoting evidence-based healthcare and informed healthcare choices and aims to support activities and research that increase the use and understanding of evidence in healthcare.


  1. Publication of baseline research of EBM teaching in Ireland (UCC 2017), which showed positive attitudes towards EBM. The research showed that the first three steps of EBM (ask, acquire, appraise) were taught more frequently in Ireland than steps four and five (apply, assess). A named EBM lead/champion was not identifiable within the majority of institutions.

  2. 3 day training provided to 50 healthcare professionals in November 2017 on ‘introduction to evidence based practice’ in collaboration with the CEBM.

  3. Core group of health professionals identified to commence establishment of a network of both EBM practitioners and educators in Ireland.

  4. EBM Education Forum held with educators, regulators and accreditation bodies in 2016 and 2017.

  5. Research commenced in 2018 on the development of a competency framework for EBM education in Ireland.

Conclusions This project addresses the current lack of standardised EBM education, training and practice in Ireland. EBMI will provide a hub for education, collaboration and dissemination with a multidisciplinary group of health professionals working in the Irish health system. The network aims to build a future network of EBM advocates and will maintain strong links with the international EBM community.

Through dissemination and translation of evidence into practice, this innovative national initiative will enhance our ability to communicate, translate and exchange information to make a real difference in health care.

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