Helping the cause of trusted evidence: the work of Cochrane Germany, Austria and Switzerland

Date & Time
Wednesday, September 6, 2023, 12:30 PM - 2:00 PM
Location Name
Session Type
Rüschemeyer G1, Nußbaumer-Streit B2, von Elm E3, Braun C1
1Cochrane Germany, Germany
2Cochrane Austria, Austria
3Cochrane Switzerland, Switzerland

Background: Within the past 30 years, Geographic Groups have played an important role as national and regional subsidiaries of the global network Cochrane. In their respective countries, the Geographic Groups pursue the goals of Cochrane, e.g., by disseminating Cochrane evidence, advocating for its use in all kinds of health and care decisions, or offering training and expertise in Cochrane/systematic review methods. Although some Geographic Groups have stable funding and can continue their work throughout Cochrane’s imminent transition period, this is not the case for others. The future role of Geographic Groups within the global network as compared to Evidence Synthesis Units and Thematic Groups is less clear and may need to be revisited.
Objectives: By presenting the current work of Cochrane Germany, Austria, and Switzerland, we showcase the contribution of Geographic Groups to the overall goals of Cochrane and hope to stimulate discussion about their future role and position within Cochrane’s new organizational structure.
Methods: The poster gives an overview and presents selected examples of activities from all three German-speaking Geographic Groups. These include joint projects conducted by all three groups, like the translation of Plain Language Summaries (Cochrane Kompakt), the blog “WissenWasWirkt”, workshops and symposia, or the engagement in Cochrane Public Health Europe. Another example is Cochrane Austria’s contribution to the Rapid Reviews Methods Group. Our activities address a wide range of audiences, including patients, healthcare professionals, guideline developers, researchers, students, journalists, and decision-makers. Conclusion: Geographic Groups play a crucial role in Cochrane’s work. We suggest that this role should not only be maintained but strengthened within the organization’s future strategy. In this future, the original idea of Cochrane as an international and diverse network needs to spring even more into life to ensure that Cochrane’s vision of better health for all people becomes reality. Patient, public, and/or healthcare consumer involvement: Patients and the general public are key audiences for our dissemination activities.