Cochrane Branch Opens in Tehran

Cochrane Branch Opens in TehranCochrane Branch Opens in Tehran

The Cochrane Iran Associate Center was launched on June 10 in Tehran.

Cochrane is a global non-profit independent network of researchers, professionals, patients, caregivers, and people interested in health.  The non-governmental organization provides high-quality information on medical research so as to facilitate evidence-based choices about health interventions for health professionals, patients and policymakers.

The center is located at the capital’s National Institute for Medical Research Development (NIMAD), a national body that funds medical research under the supervision of the Health Ministry.

Cochrane Iran will be coordinated and supervised by Ali Akbar Haqdoost, director, and Bita Mesgarpour, co-director.

The center will promote evidence-based decision making in healthcare across Iran by supporting and training, as well as working with clinicians, professional associations, policymakers, patients, and the media to encourage the dissemination and use of “Cochrane evidence” from research to help professionals make informed choices about treatment.

Health Minister Hassan Qazizadeh Hashemi said at the opening ceremony that the global organization has made a great contribution in transforming the way health decisions are made in treatment of illnesses.

He expressed hope that the opportunity will help in the domestic development of medical sciences and better healthcare services for patients.

“This center will become a cornerstone for evidence-based practice in Iran, the region and beyond,” he was quoted as saying by IRNA.

  Help Improve Quality

Reza Malekzadeh, ministry’s deputy for research and technology, said cooperation with the center will help improve the quality of scientific research.

“Iranian researchers will not only be able to build relations with world scientists, but also have access to reliable and up-to-date references and research papers that will enable them to avoid duplication on a subject matter,” he said.

The UK-based Cochrane was founded in 1993 under the leadership of Iain Chalmers, 74, a British health services researcher. It was developed in response to Archie Cochrane’s call for up-to-date, systematic reviews of all relevant randomized controlled trials of health care. Cochrane (1909-88) was a Scottish doctor noted for his book ‘Effectiveness and Efficiency: Random Reflections on Health Services,’ which advocated the use of randomized control trials to make medicine more effective and efficient. He is considered to be the originator of the idea of ‘Evidence-Based Medicine’ in the current era.

Today, around 37,000 Cochrane contributors from more than 130 countries, work together “to produce credible and accessible health information that is free from commercial sponsorship and other conflicts of interest,” the organization’s website says.

It has official ties with the World Health Organization since 2011. This collaboration includes the right to appoint a representative to participate, without vote, in WHO meetings, including at the World Health Assembly, the WHO decision-making body. Participation in that assembly allows Cochrane to make expository statements on WHO health resolutions.


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