Evidence Based Oral Health Practice

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Training rural women in Oral Health Promotion activities in Nepal, 21 June 2009. Image by Latrobebohs
  • Wikipedia is the largest encyclopedia in the world
  • Everything on Wikipedia has been written by people like us
  • 80,000 contributors
  • 450 million unique visitors PER MONTH!
  • 23 Million articles in 280 languages
  • Wikipedia grows by nearly 9,700 articles per day and 12 million contributions per month
  • Wikipedia is a prominent health information Web site (Laurent & Vickers 2009)
  • 31 percent of Americans visit Wikipedia for health information (Holmes Report, 2012)
  • The quality of drug information in Wikipedia continues to be inconsistent (Kupferberg & Protus, 2011)

Group Assignment[edit | edit source]

A great deal of your patients will access health information from the WWW including Wikipedia. It’s fast, convenient and best of all, its FREE. Health professionals generally discourage this as they worry that the information may not be accurate and worse it may also be dangerous placing people’s health at risk. University teachers also discourage the use of Wikipedia by students as it is not ‘rigorously peer-reviewed.

The reality though is that our patients will continue to use it. So how do we ensure that they are not accessing information that is not helpful? WELL one way we could reduce risks is to engage the information sites in a positive way to ensure that the information is (more) accurate!

Your group assignment will require you to edit a Wikipedia site to make it more accurate and useful. You will create an account and become an ‘Author’ in Wikipedia. Information that you add and edits you make must be evidence based.

What you need to do[edit | edit source]

  1. Create a Wikipedia account for yourself
  2. Access the nominated Wikipedia page on a regular basis throughout the study period
  3. Decide on the important areas of information that are needed – what information do people need? This could form the basis of ‘sections’ on the page
  4. Edit the information on the page to ensure it is evidence based – academic references must be provided to support the information you are using. (1000 words required)
  5. Engage in the ‘talk’ linked to the Wikipage

See Also[edit | edit source]