Resources for guideline developers

Methods for rating the quality of evidence

NHMRC uses GRADE (Grading of Recommendations, Assessment, Development and Evaluation) in the development of its guidelines. GRADE is an internationally recognised approach to rate the quality of evidence and the strength of recommendations and is considered to be the standard in guideline development.

Guidelines developers seeking NHMRC approval of their guidelines may use either GRADE or the earlier NHMRC levels of evidence and grades for recommendations for developers of guidelines (2009) for rating the quality of evidence.  These options are documented in the Procedures and requirements for meeting the 2011 NHMRC standard for clinical practice guidelines.

It should be noted that NHMRC has no plans to update or maintain the NHMRC levels of evidence and grades for recommendations for developers of clinical practice guidelines (2009)

A guide to the development, evaluation and implementation of clinical practice guidelines and accompanying handbooks

The NHMRC is currently working with an expert advisory committee to develop a new online resource for guideline developers that will supersede NHMRC’s current suite of methodological advice.  The revised content will  provide current practical advice on guideline development in order to meet the NHMRC Standard for Guidelines.

This information will be developed and published in self-contained modules on the NHMRC 'Guidelines for Guidelines' website which can be easily updated as new evidence becomes available.

The modules will cover a range of topics such as guideline implementation, forming actionable recommendations, identifying and managing conflicts of interest, and scoping complex guidelines for public health or environmental health issues. NHMRC will publish the first tranche of modules in early 2018. Expected dates for public consultation on the remaining draft modules are available below.

NHMRC is now consulting on the first five draft modules: identifying and managing conflicts of interest, engaging stakeholders, conducting public consultation, deciding whether to adopt, adapt, or start development from scratch, and enhancing implementability.

To access the draft modules and for further information about making a submission, please go to NHMRC's consultation website or contact the guidelines team via clinicalguidelines@nhmrc.gov.au or on (02) 6217 9392. To receive alerts about upcoming NHMRC public consultations, including future guidelines modules, please register your interest at the NHMRC Subscription Service.

Information documents and templates to assist guideline developers seeking NHMRC approval

Information on the NHMRC procedures and requirements to meet the 2011 NHMRC standard for clinical practice guidelines

Guideline development and conflicts of interest

For further assistance please contact the NHMRC clinical guidelines team via email clinicalguidelines@nhmrc.gov.au or call 02 6217 9100.