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Evidence Based Practice: PICO

Searching for evidence: develop a well-formed clinical question

To search for evidence based information, you first need to develop a well-formed clinical question. It is recommended that you formulate your question using the PICO concept to search for quantitative studies.

Searching for the evidence: develop an effective search strategy

Once you have established your focused clinical question, you then need to convert it into an effective search strategy. Use this PICO worksheet to assist in the process. This involves identifying:

  • Keywords or synonyms
  • Type of study
  • Which database/s to search

PICO example

Here is an example of a clinical question that outlines the PICO components.

How would you begin searching for this topic? See the completed worksheet here.