gms | German Medical Science

24. Jahrestagung des Netzwerks Evidenzbasierte Medizin e. V.

Netzwerk Evidenzbasierte Medizin e. V. (EbM-Netzwerk)

22. - 24.03.2023, Potsdam

WICID 2.0: Evidence-informed decision-making at the community level during a pandemic

Meeting Abstract

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  • Jan Marcel Stratil - Independent, Deutschland
  • Josefina Lehner - Academy of Public Health Services, Department for Applied Research and Transfer in the Public Health Service, Deutschland
  • Simon Bimcok - Academy of Public Health Services, Department for Applied Research and Transfer in the Public Health Service, Deutschland
  • Laura Arnold - Academy of Public Health Services, Department for Applied Research and Transfer in the Public Health Service, Deutschland

Gesundheit und Klima – EbM für die Zukunft. 24. Jahrestagung des Netzwerks Evidenzbasierte Medizin. Potsdam, 22.-24.03.2023. Düsseldorf: German Medical Science GMS Publishing House; 2023. Doc23ebmV5-05

doi: 10.3205/23ebm025, urn:nbn:de:0183-23ebm0253

Veröffentlicht: 21. März 2023

© 2023 Stratil et al.
Dieser Artikel ist ein Open-Access-Artikel und steht unter den Lizenzbedingungen der Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License (Namensnennung). Lizenz-Angaben siehe



Background/research question: Public health decision-making requires the balancing of numerous and often conflicting factors. During the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, sound and fair decision-making processes were challenged by time constraints and inherent limited evidence. Uncertain effects on the course of the pandemic had to be weight against public health impacts beyond COVID-19, broad societal consequences, or the infringement individual liberties, among other factors. Evidence-to-decision frameworks are neither able nor intended to replace stakeholder participation, but they can serve as a tool to ensure the relevance and completeness of criteria to be considered for evidence-informed decision making in PH and guideline development, despite scarce resources.

Methods: To enable processes with significant participation of stakeholders in times of crisis, we used the WHO-INTEGRATE framework [1] as a starting point to develop the WHO-INTEGRATE COVID-19 framework version 1.0 [2] employing "best-fit" framework synthesis. WICID 1.0 is based on a content analysis of comprehensive strategy documents to guide policy makers in implementing new or decrease existing measures to protect against COVID-19 in Germany. To address the needs of decision-makers and decision-making realities at the local level, the generic WICID 1.0 is being revised based on a systematic analysis of relevant policy documents.

Results: WICID 2.0 consists of 11+1 criteria considered as relevant to enable local decision-makers to weigh factors after appropriate evaluation. The criteria cover implications for the health of individuals and populations due to and beyond COVID-19, infringement on liberties and fundamental human rights, acceptability and equity considerations, societal, environmental and economic implications, as well as implementation, resource and feasibility considerations. The validation showed high consistency with minor revisions between WICID 1.0 and 2.0.

Conclusion WICID can be a tool to support researchers, practitioners, and policy makers to systematically integrate evidence and ethics and to balance of health, societal and other considerations when reflecting on public health interventions targeting COVID-19. The practical guide will help public health practitioners to adapt WICID 2.0 to the reality of (policy) decision-making processes at the community level in times of crisis.

Competing interests: none


Rehfuess EA, Stratil JM, Scheel IB, Portela A, Norris SL, Baltussen R. The WHO-INTEGRATE evidence to decision framework version 1.0: integrating WHO norms and values and a complexity perspective. BMJ Glob Health. 2019 Jan 25;4(Suppl 1):e000844. DOI: 10.1136/bmjgh-2018-000844 Externer Link
Stratil JM, Voss M, Arnold L. WICID framework version 1.0: criteria and considerations to guide evidence-informed decision-making on non-pharmacological interventions targeting COVID-19. BMJ Glob Health. 2020 Nov;5(11):e003699. DOI: 10.1136/bmjgh-2020-003699 Externer Link