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Global health: the importance of evidence-based medicine

Gretchen L Birbeck1, Charles S Wiysonge2, Edward J Mills34, Julio J Frenk5, Xiao-Nong Zhou6 and Prabhat Jha7

Author Affiliations

1 University of Rochester Medical Center, School of Medicine and Dentistry, 601 Elmwood Ave, Box CU420694, Rochester, NY 14642, USA

2 Centre for Evidence-based Health Care, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Stellenbosch University, Tygerberg Campus, Cape Town 7505, South Africa

3 Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Ottawa, 25 University Private, Ottawa ON K1N 6N5, Canada

4 Stanford Prevention Research Center, Stanford University, 291 Campus Drive, Stanford, CA 94305510, USA

5 Harvard School of Public Health, Kresge Building, Room 1005, 677 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02115, USA

6 Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute of Parasitic Diseases, 207 Rui Jin Er Road, Shanghai 200025, PR China

7 Centre for Global Health Research, St. Michael’s Hospital, Dalla Lana School of Public Health, 30 Bond Street, Toronto M5B 1W8, Canada

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BMC Medicine 2013, 11:223  doi:10.1186/1741-7015-11-223

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Published: 16 October 2013


Global health is a varied field that comprises research, evaluation and policy that, by its definition, also occurs in disparate locations across the world. This forum article is introduced by our guest editor of the Medicine for Global Health article collection, Gretchen Birbeck. Here, experts based across different settings describe their personal experiences of global health, discussing how evidence-based medicine in resource-limited settings can be translated into improved health outcomes.

Global health; Policy; Evidence-based medicine; Research output; Research methodology; Poverty; Infectious diseases; Health coverage; Resource-limited settings