Evidence-based practice (EBP) integrates researched scientific evidence with clinical expertise and patient needs and expectations. EBP involves a systematic search for, and appraisal of, the best evidence in order to make the best possible clinical decisions. An EBP approach should be considered whenever a clinician, hospital, laboratory, or institution of any kind wants to implement a significant change in practice that can affect patient outcomes or care delivery.
EBP involves the judicious use of protocols and algorithms. It requires that any new therapy, procedure, or test, be shown to be better than an existing method before it is adopted. Many clinicians think of EBP as being applicable only to patient treatments, but EBP can also be applied to laboratory testing. The objective of EBP for the laboratory professional is to provide sound reasons and rationale for making a change to clinical practice. The goal of EBP is to improve the quality of patient care.
Using an EBP approach goes a long way towards recruiting others to adopt the change as well.