New Tool to Assess Usefulness of Clinical Guidelines


From Medical Xpress: A new tool, G-TRUST (the Guideline Trustworthiness, Relevance, and Utility Scoring Tool) has been developed to help clinicians assess the usefulness of clinical guidelines in their treatment of patients.

“‘In every medical specialty, physicians are required to review multiple sets of practice guidelines to determine their usefulness for a specific patient’s treatment. Such tools are often developed primarily for research and further guideline development rather than direct clinical application,’ said first and corresponding author Allen Shaughnessy, Pharm.D., M.Med.Ed., professor at Tufts University School of Medicine and fellowship director of the Tufts University Family Medicine Residency Program at Cambridge Health Alliance.

As an aid to practicing clinicians, the research team developed a straightforward eight-point tool for scoring clinical guidelines to assess their usefulness that can be applied in a clinical setting.”

Article →­


  1. Chapter 8 of the essential “Psychiatry Under the Influence” by Whitaker and Cosgrove is “The End Product: Clinical Practice Guidelines” – so i was skeptical about this new tool, G-TRUST – until i’ve just read “said last author Lisa Cosgrove, Ph.D.” – with 6 other fabulous authors we all ought respect! The article is FREE FULL ACCESS – presently anyway – IF A HEALTHCARE PROVIDER – PLEASE CHECK IT OUT, AND DISSEMINATE –

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  2. All psychiatric guidelines I’m aware of would score woefully by these excellent measures – this tool deserves a blog / educational highlight on MIA – Cosgrove? Lexcin? Whitaker? – it ought be highlighted on the site: the measures which are used:

    Relevance threats
    1. The patient populations and conditions are relevant to my clinical setting.
    2. The recommendations are clear and actionable.
    3. The recommendations focus on improving patient-oriented outcomes, explicitly comparing benefits versus harms to support clinical decision making.

    Evidence threats
     4. The guidelines are based on a systematic review of the research data.
     5. The recommendation statements important to you are based on graded evidence and include a description of the quality (e,g, strong, weak) of the evidence.
     6. The guideline development includes a research analyst, such as a statistician or epidemiologist.

    Interpretation threats
     7. The Chair of the guideline development committee and a majority of the rest of the committee are free of declared financial conflicts of interest, and the guideline development group did not receive industry funding for developing the guideline.
     8. The guideline development includes members from the most relevant specialties and includes other key stakeholders, such as patients, payer organizations, and public health entities, when applicable.

    With gratitude for the authors and the Delphi panellists – Rob Purssey

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