Section 1: Asking a clinical question

Learning outcomes

Module 1 introduces the concept and steps of evidence-based practice (EBP). The steps are usually motivated by a need for clinical information, often to answer the question, ‘Am I doing the best possible thing for my patient?’ (or recognise risk factors, explore aetiology, frequency, diagnosis, prognosis, or other aspects of care).

As you work through the CIAP EBP Learning Modules, you will come to know the 5 essential steps in practicing EBP. The first step is to formulate a clinical question from a general enquiry or clinical problem. This is explored using the PICO method to develop specific, focused clinical questions that generate search terms for your enquiry.

By the end of this section you will be able to:

  • Use the PICO method to formulate a ‘searchable’ clinical question