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    Peer Reviewed

    Methodological quality of WHO medical eligibility criteria for contraceptive use.

    Stanback J; Katz K

    Contraception. 2002 Jul; 66(1):1-5.

    The use of consensus recommendations and clinical guidelines is now widespread in industrialized countries and is becoming more common in developing countries. As guidance documents have become more influential, their methodological rigor has come under closer scrutiny. Using two independently developed scales, the authors assessed the methodological quality of an important set of guidelines developed by the WHO. The consensus recommendation document called Improving Access to Quality Care in Family Planning: Medical Eligibility Criteria for Contraceptive Use has become the basis for national guidelines in dozens of countries. The authors compared the quality of the WHO guidelines to that of over 300 previously assessed published guidelines. In most categories of quality, the WHO exceeded the mean scores for other published guidelines. The authors discuss these comparisons, as well as the strengths and weaknesses of the WHO guidelines. (author's)
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