What does ‘evidence based’ practice mean and why is it important?
The Evidence Based Practice Institute defines evidence based practice as “the use of systematic decision-making processes or provision of services which have been shown, through available scientific evidence, to consistently improve measurable outcomes.” Evidence based interventions are backed by sufficient research that demonstrates better health outcomes in the target population after the implementation of the intervention.
Each of the following interventions: trails, walking, obesity prevention and control, worksite wellness, and diabetes prevention and control were chosen based on recommendations from The Guide to Community Preventive Services: What Works to Promote Health? The Community Guide systematically reviews studies to determine if there is sufficient evidence to definitively say if interventions are effective. All of the interventions below have strong or sufficient evidence, proving they are effective to change health. In addition, there are existing programs in Montana that fall under each intervention category. This shows that these interventions are not only evidence-based, but also are feasible in rural and frontier counties.
This next set of evidence based health interventions comes from the County Health Rankings & Roadmaps What Works for Heath guide. The What Works for Health guide uses a similar review system to determine if an intervention is backed by sufficient evidence to be scientifically supported. Their rating system can be found here. What Works for Health also includes examples of programs that have been implemented and resources.