Understanding Health Research: are some types of evidence better than others?
Understanding Health Research, a tool for making sense of health studies: are some types of evidence better than others?Key Concepts addressed:
- 2-1 Comparisons are needed to identify treatment effects
- 2-2 Comparison groups should be similar
- 2-5 People should not know which treatment they get
Researchers use different types of research to address different types of questions. For example, if a researcher wants to know how effective a treatment is under specific conditions, a randomised control trial might be the most appropriate way to test it. If, on the other hand, researchers want to find out in depth information about what patients like and dislike about the treatment, qualitative interviews might be more appropriate.
Traditionally, in scientific research, some methods have been considered to be ‘better’ than others, or at least more useful for evidence-based decision making.