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critical appraisal, decision-making, evaluation of research, evidence-based practice, synthesis



  1. Fineout-Overholt, Ellen PhD, RN, FNAP, FAAN


Abstract: Critical appraisal is the assessment of research studies' worth to clinical practice. Critical appraisal-the heart of evidence-based practice-involves four phases: rapid critical appraisal, evaluation, synthesis, and recommendation. This article reviews each phase and provides examples, tips, and caveats to help evidence appraisers successfully determine what is known about a clinical issue. Patient outcomes are improved when clinicians apply a body of evidence to daily practice.