An important role for the Cochrane Rehabilitation Field is to disseminate the available Cochrane evidence first of all within the rehabilitation community but also beyond to other relevant health professionals, consumers and the public. This will of course be done by means of publications/newsletters, but also through a specific website, the websites of the rehabilitation societies and associated journals, and the use of social media. The communication Committee will create and maintain a database of all stakeholders and members. Besides this the Communication Committee will ensure and facilitate internal communication within Cochrane Rehabilitation. The Communication Committee will be composed by a core group of 4 to 8 members plus other individual members willing to contribute to specific Committee tasks. To guarantee the variety in Committee members’ representation, it is proposed to include at least one person coming from a LMIC and one from Allied Health Professionals. The relevant Goals of the Cochrane Rehabilitation Field for the Communication Committee would be: goal 1 - to connect rehabilitation stakeholders globally; goal 2 - to translate rehabilitation Knowledge; and goal 6 - to promote Cochrane to rehabilitation stakeholders & rehabilitation to Cochrane.
With the support of the different scientific rehabilitation societies in the world, educational initiatives such as Core EBM Courses and Rehabilitation Cochrane Review courses will be organized as part of PRM and other rehabilitation professional congresses and meetings (National, Regional and International) and offered online. A Summer school could be considered in collaboration with specific Universities for PRM and other rehabilitation professionals, and also for policy makers and healthcare managers. EBM and Cochrane review courses will be included as part of the curricula of PRM and other professionals and in continuing education. Special attention will be given to the educational situation in LMIC. For example a key resource person for a country could be trained and made responsible for training and organizing courses in the native language and mentoring others in his/her country.
In rehabilitation, EBM has been considered with diffidence by some, since RCTs in our field are difficult to conduct. Cochrane is at the centre of the EBM approach. This is a great opportunity for the rehabilitation specialty to contribute to the successful use of EBM. In addition, Cochrane has several Method Groups, whose aim is to develop appropriate methodologies for authors of review articles. The collaboration with these Method Groups will strengthen the action of this Unit.
One of the focuses of the Publication Unit will be to develop collaborations with rehabilitation journals to produce a Cochrane Corner, reporting the contents produced by Cochrane reviews relevant to rehabilitation. These sections could be differentiated according to the main interest of the journals. Another initiative could be the publication of a book, probably electronic, but possibly also printed, reporting the available Cochrane Rehabilitation evidence. Another initiative will be an e-book: the systematic approach coming from such an instrument will allow on one side to facilitate the diffusion among stakeholders, on the other to check the actual topics not covered by Cochrane Reviews. The latter will allow to define new priorities for reviews, as well as to discover neglected area and/or areas with major methodological problems to produce RCTs. These results will be shared with the other committees. Finally, meta-reviews on specific topic of rehabilitation interest will be produced as well.
Rehabilitation Professionals Representative
Chair: Prof. William Levack
Rehabilitation is by definition a multidisciplinary field involving many different professional groups. In each committee at least one member will represent the allied rehabilitation health professions. Also, one representative will be a member of the Executive Committee. These representatives will have a prominent role in ensuring that all the work of Cochrane Rehabilitation will reflect the different perspectives of the various people involved in the rehabilitation team, including professionals, consumers and care-givers. Another aim will be to progressively involve other groups that are not part of Cochrane Rehabilitation until now. So this Strategy will be developed in several ways:
1. In the Executive Committee there will be one responsible of this Strategy
2. In all Committees it will be mandatory to have one representative of rehabilitation professionals
3. In the Advisory Board there will be representatives of the Rehabilitation Team
Rehabilitation reviews database committee
One of the main aims of the Cochrane Fields is to “tag” reviews of interest to the field (in this case Rehabilitation) within the Cochrane database and to produce lists of such reviews for interested stakeholders, researchers, and clinicians worldwide. After being established, the aim of the Committee is to expand its work to include also systematic reviews out of the Cochrane Database. This work is of primary importance, and this Unit will be at the core of Cochrane Rehabilitation.