Prioritisation project for ‘Diagnosis and treatment of gynaecological cancer: improving the evidence for the NHS' - UK NIHR Cochrane Programme Grant Scheme

What was the aim of the project? The project aimed to prioritise the top 20 new gynae-oncology reviews as well as completing targeted review updates. The criteria for prioritisation were: improving patient outcomes, importance to NHS priorities, achievability and resources required, impact on efficacy and efficiency and timeliness.

Who led the project? The project was led by the then Co-ordinating Editor for the Group, Chris Williams, along with five of the Group Contact Editors and Senior Statistical Editor as well as the Managing Editors for the group: Clare Jess and Gail Quinn.

When did it take place? It took place in 2007 to 2011.

How was it funded? It was funded as part of the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Programme Grant Scheme (CPGS06).

What did we do? We emailed stakeholders about the prioritisation exercise, outlining our intention to recruit new authors teams to complete priority reviews who would then be trained and supported through the process under the supervision of a Cochrane trained mentor. Stakeholders included Cancer Networks, The British Gynaecological Cancer Society (BGCS)The British Society for Colposcopy and Cervical Pathology (BSCCP),Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG),  National Forum of Gynaecological Oncology Nurses (NFGON), OvacomeJo’s TrustNational Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) , Centre for Reviews and Dissemination (CRD)National Cancer Research Institute (NCRI) and National Health Service (NHS) Programme Directors. We asked stakeholders to share their top five priority topics in gynae-oncology; collated the feedback, checked for duplication which resulted in a list of 75 suggested topics. Much like in James Lind Alliance Priority Setting Partnerships (JLA PSP), we then held a meeting with stakeholders at the King’s Fund in London, in which we successfully prioritised the top 20 new gynae-oncology reviews. We then started the process of matching titles with new author teams. We held numerous  ‘UK roadshows’ where the Statistical Editor and a Methodologist, recruited for the project, trained author teams, which included gynae-oncology consultants, specialist trainees and nurses, in Cochrane methodology and the editorial processes. There was also extensive support and follow-up in the form of email, telephone contact and face to face meetings with the Group throughout the three-year grant period. 

What topics were found to be priority? The list of reviews completed based on priority topics from this exercise can be found here, including links to the reviews on the Cochrane Library.