"Rapid reviews are a form of evidence synthesis that may provide more timely information for decision making compared with standard systematic reviews." (AHRQ) The methods of conducting rapid reviews varies widely, and are typically done in less than 5 weeks. Often policy makers require a short deadline and a systematic review for synthesizing the evidence is not practical. A rapid review speeds up the systematic review process by omitting stages of the systematic review making it less rigorous.
Rapid Reviews are best designed for:
Broader PICO questions, new or emerging research topics, updates of previous reviews, critical topics, to assess what is already known about a policy or practice using some systematic review methods.
(Source: Cochrane: Rapid Reviews-An Introduction (2014))
Timeframe: ≤ 5 weeks (varies)
*Varies beyond the type of review. Depends on many factors such as but not limited to: resources available, the quantity and quality of the literature, and the expertise or experience of reviewers" (Grant et al. 2009)
Question: Answers a broader PICO
Sources and searches: Sources are limited due to time constraints of searching, however still uses transparent and reproducible search methods.
Selection: Based on inclusion/exclusion criteria
Appraisal: Critical and rigorous but time limited
Synthesis: Descriptive summary or categorization of data, may still be quantitative
(Source: Khangura S. et al. (2012) Evidence summaries: the evolution of a rapid review approach)
To get a better sense of your project, we suggest making an appointment with a librarian.
Before your consultation, we suggest you do the following prior to the consultation: