Evidence-based medicine (EBM) or evidence based practice (EBP), is the judicious use of the best current evidence in making decisions about the care of the individual patient. EBP also integrates clinical expertise and takes patient desires, values, and needs into consideration. Dr. David Sackett and his colleagues at McMasters University in Ontario, Canada, initially proposed EBM.
EBP is an umbrella term that encompasses evidence-based medicine, evidence-based nursing, evidence-based physical therapy, evidence-based dentistry, etc.
Sackett D. L., Straus S. E., Richardson W. S., et. al. Evidence-Based Medicine: How to Practice and Teach EBM. Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone, 2000.
Evidence-based practice consists of five steps:
1. Ask a searchable clinical question;
2. Find the best evidence to answer the question;
3. Appraise the evidence;
4. Apply the evidence with clinical expertise, taking the patient's wants/needs into consideration;
5. Evaluate the effectiveness and efficiency of the process.
Strauss, S. E. Evidence-Based Medicine: How to Practice and Teach EBM. New York: Churchill Livingstone, 2005.