I had the pleasure of presenting at the HTAi 2018 conference in Vancouver which ended yesterday. Here is a picture from the event, shared as (a) the unplanned colour co-ordination is impeccable and (b) people have commented I look like a game show host.
I talked about, you guessed it, rapid reviews. My emphasis was on the fact that, whatever the review type, you never get close to 100% of the available data and therefore you resort to sampling the data.
Systematic reviews try to get a sample of all the published literature (missing 30-50% of all trials that are unpublished and lot of other data on top of that), while RR typically have a smaller sample again (albeit similar). I asked three simple questions:
- What is a suitable sample? (using all published articles is convenient and arbitrary, nothing more)
- What is good enough? (depends on context)
- What delivers the most value?
And I bemoaned the fact that, even after 20+ years of EBM, we’re still not able to answer those questions!
But what I appreciated most was the response afterwards. Increasingly people seem to ‘get’ rapid reviews. Until recently rapid reviews were characterised as being ‘quick and dirty’; they now seem to be gaining respectability 🙂