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Identifying important questions for Cochrane systematic reviews in Eyes and Vision: Report of a priority setting exercise

Evans, J. R., Gordon, I., Azuara‐Blanco, A. , Bowen, M., Braithwaite, T., Crosby‐Nwaobi, R., Gichuhi, S., Hogg, R. E., Li, T., Minogue, V., Parker, R., Rowe, F. J., Shah, A., Virgili, G., Ramke, J. & Lawrenson, J. ORCID: 0000-0002-2031-6390 (2023). Identifying important questions for Cochrane systematic reviews in Eyes and Vision: Report of a priority setting exercise. Cochrane Evidence Synthesis and Methods, 1(3), article number e12014. doi: 10.1002/cesm.12014


Systematic reviews are important to inform decision-making for evidence-based health care and patient choice. Deciding which reviews should be prioritized is a key issue for decision-makers and researchers. Cochrane Eyes and Vision conducted a priority setting exercise for systematic reviews in eye health care.

We established a steering group including practitioners, patient organizations, and researchers. To identify potential systematic review questions, we searched global policy reports, research prioritization exercises, guidelines, systematic review databases, and the Cochrane Library (CENTRAL). We grouped questions into separate condition lists and conducted a two-round online modified Delphi survey, including a ranking request. Participants in the survey were recruited through social media and the networks of the steering group.

In Round 1, 343 people ranked one or more of the condition lists. Participants were eye care practitioners (69%), researchers (37%), patients or carers (24%), research providers/funders (5%), or noneye health care practitioners (4%) and from all World Health Organization regions. Two hundred twenty-six people expressed interest in completing Round 2 and 160 of these (71%) completed the Round 2 survey. Reviews on cataract and refractive error, reviews relevant to children, and reviews on rehabilitation were considered to have an important impact on the magnitude of disease and equity. Narrative comments emphasized the need for reviews on access to eye health care, particularly for underserved groups, including people with intellectual disabilities.

A global group of stakeholders prioritized questions on the effective and equitable delivery of services for eye health care. When considering the impact of systematic reviews in terms of reducing the burden of eye conditions, equity is clearly an important criterion to consider in priority-setting exercises.

Publication Type: Article
Publisher Keywords: equity, Eyes and Vision, prioritization, systematic reviews
Subjects: R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine
R Medicine > RE Ophthalmology
Departments: School of Health & Psychological Sciences > Optometry & Visual Sciences
SWORD Depositor:
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