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Table 1 NHMRC Body of evidence matrix

From: FORM: An Australian method for formulating and grading recommendations in evidence-based clinical guidelines

Component A
Excellent
B
Good
C
Satisfactory
D
Poor
Evidence base1 One or more level I studies with a low risk of bias or several level II studies with a low risk of bias One or two level II studies with a low risk of bias or an SR/several level III studies with a low risk of bias One or two level III studies with a low risk of bias, or level I or II studies with a moderate risk of bias Level IV studies, or level 1 to II studies/SRs with a high risk of bias
Consistency2 All studies consistent Most studies consistent and inconsistency may be explained Some inconsistency reflecting genuine uncertainty around clinical question Evidence is consistent
Clinical impact Very large Substantial Moderate Slight or restricted
Generalisability Population/s studied in body of evidence are the same as the target population in the guideline Population/s studied in the body of evidence are similar to the target population for the guideline Population/s studied in the body of evidence differ to the target population guideline but it is clinically sensible to apply this evidence to the target population3 Population/s studied in the body of evidence differ to the target population and hard to judge whether it is sensible to generalize to target population
Applicability Directly applicable to Australian healthcare context Applicable to Australian health care context with few caveats Probably applicable Australian healthcare context with some caveats Not applicable to Australian healthcare context
  1. SR = systematic review; several = more than two studies
  2. 1 Level of evidence determined from the NHMRC Evidence Hierarchy
  3. 2 If there is only one study, rank this component as 'not applicable'
  4. 3 For example, results in adults that are clinically sensible to apply to children OR psychosocial outcomes for one cancer that may be applicable to patients with another cancer