Attribute

Explanation

RELIABILITY/ REPRODUCIBILITY

Practice guidelines are reproducible and reliable (1) if—given the same evidence and methods for guidelines development—another set of experts produces essentially the same statements and (2) if—given the same clinical circumstances—the guidelines are interpreted and applied consistently by practitioners (or other appropriate parties).

CLINICAL APPLICABILITY

Practice guidelines should be as inclusive of appropriately defined patient populations as evidence and expert judgment permit, and they should explicitly state the population(s) to which statements apply.

CLINICAL FLEXIBILITY

Practice guidelines should identify the specifically known or generally expected exceptions to their recommendations and discuss how patient preferences are to be identified and considered.

CLARITY

Practice guidelines must use unambiguous language, define terms precisely, and use logical, easy-to-follow modes of presentation.

MULTIDISCIPLINARY PROCESS

Practice guidelines must be developed by a process that includes participation by representatives of key affected groups. Participation may include serving on panels that develop guidelines, providing evidence and viewpoints to the panels, and reviewing draft guidelines.

SCHEDULED REVIEW

Practice guidelines must include statements about when they should be reviewed to determine whether revisions are warranted, given new clinical evidence or professional consensus (or the lack of it).

DOCUMENTATION

The procedures followed in developing guidelines, the participants involved, the evidence used, the assumptions and rationales accepted, and the analytic methods employed must be meticulously documented and described.

 

SOURCE: Institute of Medicine. Guidelines for Clinical Practice: From Development to Use. M.J. Field and K.N. Lohr, eds. Washington, D.C.: National Academy Press, 1992.



The National Academies | 500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001
Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement