gms | German Medical Science

G-I-N Conference 2012

Guidelines International Network

22.08 - 25.08.2012, Berlin

The importance of involving the target population in guideline development: experiences from the development of evidence-based African prevention guidelines

Meeting Abstract

  • E. De Buck
  • T. Dieltjens
  • N. Pauwels
  • J. Volmink
  • P. Vandekerckhove

Guidelines International Network. G-I-N Conference 2012. Berlin, 22.-25.08.2012. Düsseldorf: German Medical Science GMS Publishing House; 2012. DocP051

doi: 10.3205/12gin163, urn:nbn:de:0183-12gin1632

Published: July 10, 2012

© 2012 De Buck et al.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( You are free: to Share – to copy, distribute and transmit the work, provided the original author and source are credited.



We recently developed evidence-based African First Aid Materials (AFAM), that describe the most effective and up-to-date techniques specifically relevant for Sub-Saharan Africa. Because of the major importance of prevention in health care and because first aid recommendations are often linked to prevention advice, we decided to complement AFAM with prevention recommendations. To develop evidence-based guidelines for prevention of injuries and diseases relevant for Sub-Saharan Africa. We searched 8 databases to identify relevant evidence for the effectiveness and feasibility of preventive interventions, risk factors and African perspectives. A multidisciplinary panel of eleven African experts discussed the draft materials. The quality of evidence and strength of recommendations were determined according to the GRADE approach. Three peer reviewers revised the guidelines and a pilot study was performed in Uganda to test the clarity of several drawings. We screened more than 11,000 references and selected 139 publications, including 68 African studies. Based on the evidence, we formulated draft recommendations and developed illustrations. The feedback of the expert panel, peer reviewers and pilot study was processed in three different phases and the guideline was finalised in December 2011. Values and preferences of the target population were taken into account by using African studies, involving African experts and conducting a pilot study in the field. The latter particularly resulted in an improvement of the materials. Involving the target population in many different ways is an added value for a guideline adapted to a specific context.