Establishments of the Cochrane India Network: Sharing initial experiences

Date & Time
Wednesday, September 6, 2023, 12:30 PM - 2:00 PM
Location Name
Session Type
Capacity building in evidence synthesis
Sinha A1, Priyanka Y1, Singh A1
1Indian Council of Medical Research, India

Background: Cochrane is a global, independent network with members and supporters worldwide. There are official geographic Cochrane Groups in 50+ countries. Moving away from the single centre approach in India, a Cochrane India Network (CIN) was set up in 2021 with nine Affiliate Centers across India.
Objectives: To promote Cochrane and its work in India, to support and develop the community of Cochrane members and to disseminate Cochrane systematic reviews locally based on stakeholder network, the media and other communication channels.
Methods: A Cochrane India Network planning meeting was conducted on February 20 to 21, 2020, in New Delhi. Nine affiliate centres of the CIN were announced in 2021 ( An introductory meeting of the Network was held on April 14, 2021, with formal introduction of the teams of the network, introduction to the strategic plans and modalities of functioning. Formal inauguration of the CIN took place on November 26, 2021, with participation of members from the Cochrane, World Health Organization (WHO), Government of India and the director general (DG) of the Indian Council of MedicaI Research (ICMR). Each of the nine affiliates has formalized a memorandum of understanding with Cochrane.
Results: Regular meetings with the Cochrane Central Executive members are held to discuss the procedures and activities of the network. On average, four workshops were organized by the nine affiliates, and 50 participants sensitized and trained in each. The ICMR Affiliate has conducted four workshops on protocol development and writing systematic reviews in hybrid mode. An annual meeting of the CIN was organized by Shiksha 'O' Anusandhan (SOA) at Bhubaneswar. Participating affiliate directors presented the activities of their affiliates. The ICMR Cochrane Affiliate was entrusted to coordinate 18 systematic reviews on priority questions of ‘NITI Aayog’. A total of 28 systematic reviews to provide answers to existing knowledge gaps in Government’s ‘Anemia Mukt Bharat’ program have been initiated. Collaborative work with Campbell South Asia has been initiated.
Conclusions:As a result of above efforts the pool of systematic Reviewers in India is steadily increasing. The robust evidence generated through the SRs would guide the national programs for better health care decision making.
Patient, public and/or healthcare consumer involvement:CIN is increasing the use of Cochrane’s evidence in knowledge translation and policy making activities in India that will reflect in better patient care.