Verhandelingen van de Koninklijke Academie voor Geneeskunde van België vol:69 issue:5-6 pages:335-50
The Cochrane Collaboration is an international not-for-profit and independent organization, dedicated to making up-to-date, accurate information about the effects of healthcare readily available worldwide. It produces and disseminates systematic reviews of healthcare interventions and promotes the search for evidence in the form of clinical trials and other studies of interventions. The Cochrane Collaboration was founded in 1993 and named after the British epidemiologist, Archie Cochrane. A Cochrane review is a systematic review. Those who prepare the reviews are mostly healthcare professionals who volunteer to work in one of the many Cochrane review groups, with editorial teams overseeing the preparation and maintenance of the reviews, as well as application of the rigorous quality standards for which Cochrane Reviews have become known. Based upon a clearly defined clinical question all steps of a scientific paper with a rigourous design are inside. This will guide the review process including strategies for locating and selecting studies critically appraising their relevance and validity and for analyzing variation among their results. If there are sufficient studies of good quality a meta-analysis can be performed. The major product of the Collaboration is the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews which is published quarterly as part of the Cochrane Library. From 2008 there will be also a place for systematic reviews of diagnostic accuracy studies. The Belgian Centre of Evidence-Based medicine, CEBAM, plays an important role as Belgian Branch of the Dutch Cochrane Collaboration in maintaining and promoting Cochrane Systematic Reviews.