Skip to main content
PCC Library Logo

Clinical Instructor Resources (OTA)

Search for Evidence

Essential Evidence Plus with AHFS DI Essentials (cover image)Essential Evidence Plus Contents:

  • Essential Evidence Topics
  • Decision Support Tools
  • Diagnostic Test Calculators
  • History & Physical Exam Calculators
  • Cochrane Systematic Reviews
  • POEMs (Patient Oriented Evidence that Matters) Research Summaries
  • EBM Guidelines and EBMG Evidence Summaries (includes audio, image, and video libraries)


Search for Evidence in CINAHL Plus with Full Text:CINAHL Plus with Full Text, available via EBSCOhost

Use the options on the advanced search page to limit your results to evidence-based medicine articles.

Search limiters to consider:

  1. Evidence-Based Practice
  2. Randomized Controlled Trials
  3. Publication Type box: Clinical Trial, Systematic Review, Randomized Controlled Trial, Evidence-Based Practice and Meta Analysis. (NOTE: You can hold the CTRL button down on your keyboard to select more than one option in the box.)

Do not use all three of these options and publication type limiters at once as no articles will match ALL of these criteria. It is better to try each of these options in separate searches. You can however, choose multiple options inside a box such as the Publication Type box.


Find Evidence-Based Care Sheets in CINAHL:

CINAHL includes a set of updated Evidence-Based Care Sheets (1-2 pages in length). These sheets list care methods and the evidence upon which this care is based.

Once you have opened the CINAHL database, look at the blue navigation bar at the very top of the screen and click Evidence-Based Care Sheets.



For more in-depth information about formulating searches for evidence based resources, consult the following tutorials. Keep in mind that the tutorials listed here were created by other libraries, and they reference resources that may or may not be available through PCC Library.

PICO Method

The PICO model helps you to develop a specific, answerable research question about a clinical health topic. The health/medical literature can then be searched for evidence to answer the PICO question.  

PICO stands for . . .

  • P = Patient, or Population, or Problem

    • Describes a group of patients who have factors in common such as age group, gender, ethnicity, having a disease or condition.
    • What is the problem you are looking at?
    • Is there a specific population you need to focus on?
    • Example: overweight adult with hypertension
  • I = Intervention or Issue of Interest

    • Describes the intervention you are considering, such as a treatment or diagnostic test.  
    • Example: diet and exercise changes
  • C = Comparison

    • Comparison if you are comparing multiple interventions.
    • Example: no change in diet or exercise
  • O = Outcome

    • Describes the desired effect or outcome for the patient.
    • Example: reduction in blood pressure

Research Questions Using PICO

Below are a couple of examples of research questions with the PICO components identified.

Example 1:

In adults ages 65 and older, how does the use of an influenza vaccine affect the likelihood of developing pneumonia?

  • P = adults ages 65 and older
  • I = influenza vaccine
  • C = there is not one; a comparison is not always needed
  • O = pneumonia

Example 2:

In sex workers, how do community empowerment interventions affect HIV transmission rates?

  • P = sex workers
  • I = community empowerment interventions
  • C = there is not one; a comparison is not always needed
  • O = HIV transmission rates

More About EBM