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Evidence-Based Veterinary Medicine

As veterinary professionals we are expected to ensure that our practice is evidence based.

Simply put, evidence-based practice involves applying the best and most relevant scientific evidence, integrated with clinical expertise, whilst taking into account each patient and owner's individual circumstances, when making clinical decisions. This should be followed by applying quality improvement processes to learn from outcomes and make changes to one’s practice.

Whether you are looking for evidence to support clinical decision making in an individual case or want to develop evidence-based guidelines for your practice, it can be helpful to structure the process.

We recognise that there are barriers to this process

  • The information available is often spread over many different sources and you and your team do not have the time or resources to seek them out.
  • There is limited time to analyse the evidence at the point of care.
  • It can be challenging to evaluate the value of the information, particularly when it has been provided by commercial organisations.
  • The evidence-base in some areas of veterinary science may be poor or even lacking, perhaps because clinical research is not always well focussed upon the needs of practice.
  • There is a still a lack of methodically performed rigorous, large-scale clinical studies in veterinary medicine.

At RCVS Knowledge, we have developed a range of resources to help you to navigate these barriers and integrate evidence into practice