Evidence Based Practice
Evidence-based practice (EBP) is a healthcare provider approach to patient care that integrates clinical experience and expertise, the highest quality research evidence, and the values of the individual patient in making decisions about patient care.
In 2005, the National Institutes of Health/National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NIH/NCCAM now NCCIH) funded an NUHS grant titled “Program for Curriculum Development in Evidence Based Practice” (R25AT002872), a 4 year project that proposed to significantly increase the depth and breadth in the NUHS curricula. The 3 arms of this educational plan:
- Added courses and content to the curriculum introducing the Fundamentals of Research; asking research questions; accessing and appraising the literature and applying the information to clinical practice; and an intern journal club
- A faculty training program that included outside speakers and webinars, in-services, workshops, and journal clubs with information parallel to the student arm
- An immersive mentored research experience for one student and one faculty per year at our partnering research intensive institution, University of Illinois at Chicago
In 2009, a competitive revision of the project “Sustainable EBP in a CAM Institution” was funded for an additional 4 years. The goals were to augment the quantity and quality of EBP content in all NUHS curricula beyond what had been achieved with the initial grant; to expand the knowledge base of faculty related to EBP; and develop a sustainable DC/Masters of Public Health dual degree with the University of Illinois School Of Public Health. Over the 8 years of the grant, all project goals were met.
In the years following the grant, Evidence Based/Informed Practice has become an integral part of all NUHS programs, including undergraduate, professional and post-professional programs. Along with the stand alone courses introduced during the initial grant period, dozens of courses have incorporated current research into basic understanding as well as how such research applies to diagnosis or treatment approaches. NUHS students graduate with the skills to practice using the concepts, methods, and procedures of evidence-based practice.