Case studies of priority setting

Case studies of priority setting
Case studies of priority setting

Below you will find a series of case studies of priorty setting in action withing a range of Cochrane Groups. You can read more about this series of case studies here.

If you have examples of Prioritisation work that you would like to share, please contact Cochrane KT Department.


Priority setting focusses editorial base support

Cochrane Skin

Aim: To prioritise unanswered questions in areas where there is a high global burden of diseases, rather than trying to cover all of dermatology.
Stakeholders: Twenty different stakeholder groups, including WHO, international dermatology associations and national guideline development group centres.  Stakeholder groups were from across the world and included condition specific organisations.
Approach: Stakeholders were initially asked to identify their top priorities which were then reviewed by the editorial team. These lists were compiled alongside the evidence of the global burden of disease.  Seven topics were identified as priority reviews. These will be the major focus for the Cochrane Skin editorial team in the future.
Date: 2018
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20th anniversary prioritization workshop

Cochrane Tobacco Addiction

Aim: To complete an in-depth prioritization process to identify a list of high priority questions.
Stakeholders: People who smoked / had smoked in the past, healthcare professionals, policymakers, service commissioners, research funders and tobacco addiction researchers.
Approach: Online survey to generate questions, mapping questions through identification of existing evidence to develop categories, Delphi method to identify priorities, and workshops led by an independent facilitator for final decision making.
Date: 2016
Read more about the original prioritisation process
UPDATE! Read more about what has happened since prioritisation


Targeting consumers on World Heart Day

Cochrane Heart

Aim: To help the group decide on new topics for future reviews and to make existing reviews more relevant by identifying patient-relevant outcomes that might have been missed.
Stakeholders: Consumers, clinicians, guideline makers and members of general public identified through connections with the World Heart Foundation
Approach: Online survey allowing people to ask questions in order to identify topics for priority reviews.
Date: 2016
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Priority setting in a low / middle income country

Cochrane Sexually Transmitted Infections

Aim: To identify questions and evidence gaps in the area of sexually transmitted infections (STI).
Stakeholders: STI experts and organisations from both high income countries and low and middle income countries.
Approach: Evidence mapping of trial reports followed by an online survey allowing each stakeholder to identify top four STI questions.
Date: 2016
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Working with guideline developers

Cochrane Incontinence

Aim: To identify gaps in their topic list and to develop a list of reviews that would meet the needs of this important stakeholder group. 
Stakeholders: Guideline developers
Approach: European Associate on Urology panel on incontinence reviewed list of current Cochrane reviews to provide input on reviews that might be missing may need to be updated.
Date: 2016
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Using the James Lind Alliance Priority Setting Partnership model

Cochrane Gynaecological, Neuro-oncology and Orphan Cancers

Aim: To identify the most important clinical research questions on brain and spinal cord tumours that the group suspected were not being addressed because of the bias towards lab-based research in this area 
Stakeholders: Patients, carers, professional organisations and charities working in the field 
Approach: James Lind Alliance Priority Setting Partnership model; online survey to generate questions, with workshop to prioritise results.
Date: 2014
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A wide-ranging prioritization process for generating and prioritizing new and update review topics

Cochrane Consumers and Communication Group

Aim: To develop a list of the 5 top priorities which reflect the important questions, to increase capacity to meet stakeholders needs and to foster stronger engagement with stakeholder groups.
Stakeholders: Stakeholders were invited to complete an initial survey. Stakeholders included individual patients and carers, patient groups, government health departments, medical and nursing colleges and researchers.
Approach: An international on-line survey of stakeholders to generate ideas for topics which were then organised into broad research topics. The topics were narrowed through a priority setting workshop which included 28 participants, of which 50% were consumers or carers.  Of the 12 remaining topics after the workshop, five were identified and included onto the priority review list.
Date: 2016
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Watch a presentation of the case study from the Cochrane colloquium.


Further examples of prioritization work completed by Cochrane Groups can be found on Priority Setting Methods Group website.