Background:Multi-stakeholder involvement in policy making and evidence synthesis is the need of the hour. The Ethiopian evidence-based health care center (EEBHC) trained key experts involved in policy making and knowledge translation from Ethiopian Ministry of Health (MOH) and Ethiopian Public Health Institute (EPHI) on comprehensive systematic review.
After the training, a team of policy makers from MOH , knowledge translation experts from EPHI and research experts from Jimma University (JU) involved in prioritising the policy topics which need systematic reviews to be conducted in Ethiopia.
Objectives: To explore the experience of involving policy makers in prioritising policy needs to conduct systematic reviews.
Methods: Accordingly, EEBHC selected two topics entitled, 'Compassionate, respectful and caring behaviour of the health professionals in the primary healthcare delivery in sub-Saharan Africa' and 'Mechanism of retaining and motivating healthcare workers in government institutions in Sub-Saharan Africa'. These policy makers were involved in all stages of the systematic review process starting from title selection, literature search through databases like PUB MED, CINAHL, EMBASE, MEDLINE, COCHRANE, JBI database for published evidences and other gray sources. The centre completed the protocol and submitted it to JBI for approval and this team of experts will continue working together to finalise the review.
Results:Until now, the centre had challenges and positive experiences. MOH people are so busy and continuous chasing them created positive energy among them and they took interest in selecting topic and the other review processes. They particularly, liked hands on 'search strategy' using various data bases and they said, “This helps us to search on any databases whenever needed in the future.” They also liked the process of 'inclusion and exclusion criteria' for a selected topic.
Conclusions:Involving policy makers in the whole process of evidence synthesis is a very useful experience that we learn until now and the future experiences will be shared at the Summit.