Background: Guideline development requires a good understanding of key principles of evidence-based medicine (EBM). It is unclear whether general practice (GP) trainees are capable of using formal guideline-adaptation processes.
Objectives: The aim of this study is to describe and evaluate the process used to support GP trainees on involving them in guideline adaptation as a method for teaching EBM.
Methods: The results of the guideline adaptations were inventoried in a specifically designed matrix. These matrices were assessed by eight different reviewers with experience in the use or evaluation of guideline adaptation methods. Each matrix was evaluated as being good (all the adaptation steps were correctly carried out), moderate (revision was necessary, but without important comments) or poor (important concerns regarding the adaptation process). All students were invited to complete a survey on the feasibility of the process and the provided support.
Results: We started our guideline adaptation project in 2012. Thus far, 122 students have engaged in adapting 60 different guidelines. So far 47 guidelines have been examined on quality by one of the reviewers. 3 (6%) works were considered of poor quality, 23 (49%) were considered of moderate quality and the remaining 21 (45%) were considered of high quality. Analysis of the surveys is still ongoing and will be reported on.
Conclusions: When supervised in a structured manner, students are capable of understanding and performing all the steps of a formal guideline adaptation process. The programme has been very successful and the resulting adapted guidelines of good quality. Comments of the students on feasibility will be reported on.