The Cochrane Review Protocol Development workshop was successfully conducted in the Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya. It was the first being organized in University Malaya. It was jointly organized by the Julius Centre University of Malaya (Centre of Clinical Epidemiology & Evidence Based Medicine) and the Department of Social & Preventive, Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya. The speaker of the workshop was Professor Dr Prathap Thrayan, Director of the South Asian Cochrane Centre and Network. He was assisted by a few staff and post-graduate candidates of JCUM during the workshop.
This workshop received tremendous response from the participants with more than ten on waiting list and we had to reject more than 20 more applications. We could only take in a total of 51 participants as we were limited by the number of available computers. There were 3 international participants from Germany, Thailand and Singapore respectively. The other participants were from the public and private universities including University of Malaya as well as Ministry of Health within the country.
The five-day workshop covered Introduction to Evidence Informed Healthcare, developing a protocol and introduction to Revman, Searching and selecting trials, assessing risk of bias, Data extraction and meta-analysis, Summary of findings and grading recommendations using GradePro. All sessions were first lectured and followed with hands-on exercises. The feedback from the participants was positive as they preferred to have more exposure and experience on how to conduct a Cochrane Protocol and Review. We had full attendance up to the last session on Friday afternoon! All the participants were very enthusiastic on conducting systematic reviews, particularly Cochrane Reviews. About 10 participants had titles in mind at the end of the workshop. Among the UM participants, we are currently trying to register four titles with various Cochrane Review Groups. We will follow up with the others and try to find out if they manage to register their titles.
Report written by Dr Moy Foong Ming