This series has been intended as a brief introduction to many different facets of evidence-based medicine. The primary message of evidence-based medicine is that critical assessment of every aspect of research is necessary to ensure that we make the best possible decisions for our patients. Understanding the important concepts in study design and analysis may seem daunting, but this effort is made worthwhile every time we positively affect patient care.
Hospitalists are uniquely situated at the interface of internal medicine and essentially every other area of medicine and because of this have a tremendous opportunity to broadly impact patient care. My hope is that evidence-based medicine-savvy hospitalists will capitalize on this for the benefit of our patients, will play a prominent role in educating future clinicians on the importance of evidence-based medicine, and will use it to lead the next wave of patient care advances. TH
Dr. West practices in the Division of General Internal Medicine, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, Rochester, Minn.
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