Table 1:

Criteria for selecting topics for recommendations of the Canadian Task Force on Preventive Health Care

CriteriaExplanationSource of information*
Stage 1: Developing a short list of potential topics
Timing of most recent reviewPriority is given to topics that have not been examined by the task force within the past 5 years.
Availability of new evidencePriority is given to topics for which new or controversial evidence, which might lead to a change in existing recommendations, has emerged since the last time the topic was reviewed by the task force.
Input from primary care practitionersPriority is given to topics that will address the needs of primary care practitioners.
Stage 2: Ranking the final leading topics
Disease burdenPrevalence, mortality, comorbidity, quality of life and expected effectiveness of the preventive service in decreasing that burden are assessed.Summaries of literature reviews and stakeholder consultations are developed and provided.
Potential impact of recommendations in clinical practiceRating is done of whether there is the potential of a recommendation in a field to improve clinical practice and patient outcomes.Summary of stakeholder consultations is developed and provided.
Interest of the public or care providersPriority is given to topics that have been recommended by practitioners or stakeholders.Summary of stakeholder consultations is developed and provided.
Variation in carePriority is given to preventive services that have the potential to decrease variations in care.Summaries of literature reviews and stakeholder consultations are developed and provided.
Sufficiency of evidenceA preliminary scan is conducted to determine whether there is evidence to answer key research questions.Summary of literature reviews is developed and provided.
New evidencePriority is given especially to high-quality evidence in a stable field.Summaries of literature reviews and stakeholder consultations are developed and provided.
  • * This information is developed by the task force scientific officers with assistance from the Evidence Review and Synthesis Centre, and is provided to the topic prioritization work group.