Cochrane is named after Archie Cochrane, an epidemiologist who recognised the importance of critically evaluating health care interventions to help distinguish effective treatments from those of no benefit. It was established in 1993 and is an international network of more than 28,000 dedicated people from over 100 countries.
We work together to help health care providers, policy-makers, patients, their advocates and carers, make well-informed decisions about health care. Decisions are based on the best available research evidence, by preparing, updating and promoting the accessibility of Cochrane Reviews - over 6,000 so far - published online in the Cochrane Library and internationally recognised as the benchmark for high quality information about the effectiveness of health care.
The Cochrane Library is published by John Wiley & Sons Limited, and features a number of useful databases:
The Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews (CDSR) is one of the main features of the Library, and includes all the systematic reviews produced within the Collaboration. The Impact Factor for CDSR is 6.032 and this places the database 13th out of the 153 journals included in the Medicine, General & Internal category.
The Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL) contains all of the randomised controlled trials (RCTs) and controlled clinical trials (CCTs) identified by each Cochrane Group in their specialised trials registers. It is probably the most comprehensive source of trial evidence currently available.
The Database of Abstracts of Reviews and Effectiveness (DARE) features structured abstracts of systematic reviews which have been critically appraised by authors from the NHS Centre for Reviews & Dissemination in York.
The Cochrane Methodology Register (CMR) is a bibliography of articles and books dedicated to the science of evidence based research.
If you have expertise in some aspect of healthcare, consider joining the relevant Cochrane Review Group. If there is not yet a group which covers your specialty, register your interest in being part of a new group. Being part of a Cochrane review group provides the support, resources and training to tackle a systematic review, and an international audience when your work is published in the Cochrane Library.