Background: Rapid reviews have emerged as an efficient approach to synthesising evidence using simplified processes. Filters capable of capturing systematic reviews, guidelines, RCTs and health-technology assessments (HTAs) at once could improve the efficiency of literature search. PubMed lacks a common query for these study designs together. IECS has been performing rapid HTA for more than 10 years, and developed in the process an encompassing filter.
Objectives: To assess the diagnostic accuracy of a search filter to identify systematic reviews, guidelines, and RCTs in PubMed, compared to the current available tools of PubMed.
Methods: We will prospectively select consecutive rapid HTAs to be undertaken during 2017 by our HTA agency (Institute for Clinical Effectiveness and Health Policy -IECS- Buenos Aires, Argentina) for which the search in PubMed, without any filter yields less than 500 records (in order to have a manageable universe of citations and be feasible to our team). The search without any filter will be considered the reference standard; the IECS filter (Box 1) the index test, and the combination of PubMed’s clinical queries (narrow and broad) for systematic reviews and RCTs, and 'Guideline/Practice Guideline' article type, as the alternative test. Since there is no specific tool to identify HTAs in PubMed we will exclude them for the analysis.
The identification of relevant studies from the screening by title and abstract, and by full-text of potentially eligible studies will be performed by a researcher and verified by a second researcher. Finally, the retrieval rates of relevant references using both tests under comparison will be characterised and compared.
Results and conclusions: Results showing diagnostic accuracy of the both IECS filter and the alternative test, and its interpretation, will be presented at the Summit.