A Realist Approach to the Systematic Review

  • Geneviève Mercille

In clinical medicine, due to the widening gap between the demand and delivery of healthcare services in the 1970 s and 1980 s, priority-setting in health policies began to focus on efficiency and service costs. This situation, which is frequent in Western societies, led to the emergence of the clinical practice known as evidence-based medicine. This is usually defined as “the conscious, explicit, and judicious use of current best evidence in making decisions about the care of individual patients” (Sackett, Rosenberg, Gray, Haynes, & Richardson, 1996).

Historically, the health promotion field has been slow in embracing the use of evidence, and this hesitation may be connected with the Ottawa Charter for Health Promotion (Evans, Hall, Jones, & Neiman, 2007). The Ottawa Charter (World Health Organization, 1986), considered a milestone in the development of health promotion, did not prioritize the use of evidence to measure effectiveness. It was only in 1998 that the World Health...


Systematic Review Health Promotion Realist Approach Health Promotion Intervention Realist Synthesis 
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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Geneviève Mercille
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Social and Preventive MedicineUniversity of MontrealCanada

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