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Am Fam Physician. 2007;76(6):748

We are happy to announce that the EBM Toolkit has been enhanced and is now easier to access on the AFP Web site. This Toolkit has been somewhat difficult to find, so we brought it to the AFP “home” page (, updated the content, and improved the link features. The direct link to the EBM Toolkit is

Evidence-based medicine (EBM) is the “conscientious, explicit, and judicious use of the current best evidence in making decisions about the care of individual patients.”1 The health care professions—including primary care, surgery, nursing, and all other specialties—are moving toward evidence-based decision making in all aspects of patient care. That is why AFP asks authors to rate the strength of evidence for key recommendations on diagnosis and treatment. Readers need to understand the ratings and know how to use them in practice

What Does the EBM Toolkit Provide?

AFP's EBM Toolkit is a resource for readers, authors, and Academy members. It provides the information needed by authors and readers to appropriately use EBM ratings and apply them to their evaluation of current literature and in practice. Readers will find links to EBM and biostatistical concepts, such as number needed to treat, confidence interval, odds ratio. The EBM Toolkit has a glossary of such terms, which can be referred to as needed, or perused in order to become more familiar with these concepts. It also includes descriptions of various types of evidence-based studies and abbreviations for EBM and statistical terms. You will see these studies and abbreviations in the literature now and increasingly often in the future, so the Toolkit will be a helpful resource.

One link in the EBM Toolkit will take you to the AAFP “CME Center.” Here you'll find a list (and convenient links) of evidence-based resources, such as the National Guideline Clearinghouse, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, and the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine. These links will help readers and authors obtain the latest evidence-based literature for their research on potential articles.

What's Coming?

During the next few months, the Toolkit will add a repository of articles on critical evaluation of the literature and a mini-series on applying the principles of evidence-based medicine. Authors will find links to articles on writing an EBM review, as well as evidence-based CME. There will also be resources to help put EBM into practice.

The Toolkit is more than just an annotated glossary, it's an aid to physicians as practitioners, teachers, authors, and students of the medical literature. Please let us know if we're missing your favorite resource, or if you have any other suggestions for making it a better Toolkit for you.

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