TSC Support Team digest
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Trusted evidence. Informed decisions. Better health.

Issue 07 | December 2015

Welcome to the last TSC Support Team digest of 2015! The first year of the TSC Support Team has been busy.  We’ve trained and mentored 7 new TSCs, helped the TSC Exec to complete the HarmoniSR guidance, co-ordinated training and testing on CRS Web, reviewed and updated the content of the TSC Guide (more to follow on this soon...) and established the TSC Support help email, where we continue to respond to your enquiries. We have lots of plans for 2016 too, so watch this space! We’ve also produced 7 TSC Support Team digests so far. See the links on the TSC Portal to catch up and let us know what you’d like to see in future digests by emailing us at
CRS Web Update

Third round of testing complete

The third round of testing has been completed on CRS Web. The testing group comprises 13 TSCs who have volunteered to test out the system. This round of testing concentrated on the Dashboard (a new way to access information in the system), authentication through Archie and implementation of the HarmoniSR guidance. There were also new “undo” facilities to try out. User feedback will inform further development of CRS Web, which will continue into 2016.
TSCs who are intending to come to the Cochrane UK and Ireland Symposium will be able to see the new developments in CRS Web for themselves at the CRS training event on Monday 14 March at the Studio, Birmingham. The day will begin at 10am to give people a chance to travel on the day of the training. We’ll be sending a message to the TSC mailing list early in 2016 for you to sign up.
Following up a query to the TSC List...

Transferring searches between accounts

There has been some correspondence on the TSC list about moving search strategies between different accounts. This becomes especially important when a new TSC joins a Group and needs access to search strategies to do search updates.
Ovid support can help users to do this if you pass on the usernames of the old and new accounts. Contact them at For other platforms, things are not so straightforward. EBSCO have advised that although theoretically you can share folders with other EBSCO users, this does not include search strategies, so there is no other choice than to re-run the searches from scratch.
PubMed have said that they don’t currently offer the ability to share saved searches between accounts either, the only way to share a search is to conduct your search then send the search URL to your colleague(s), who could then save the search themselves as you've written it. Search results can be shared via the “Collections” service in MyNCBI, but not strategies themselves. users can share searches with everyone within the specified IP range for their institution. We’ve asked their support desk whether they can facilitate moving search strategies between accounts as well, but we have yet to receive a response. Let us know if you have experience of this with!
In the Wiley version of the Cochrane Library, you can share individual search strategies with people by clicking the “Share this strategy with other users” icon in Search Manager. A link can then be emailed to the user, or you can copy the link to the search and paste it into a browser. According to their helpdesk however, searches cannot otherwise be transferred between accounts.
The news is better for users of the Cochrane Register of Studies Online (CRSO). Metaxis have told us that users can have their saved searches moved to a different account easily if they wish. The new user needs to have appropriate CRS permissions set in Archie (the Group’s Managing Editor will be able to do that) and then the email addresses for the old and new accounts need to be sent to TSC Support, we will forward to the CRS technical team.
Plain language summaries

Plain language summaries (PLSs) and search dates

We wanted to make you aware of MECIR standard PLS7, which says it is now mandatory for the date of search to which some or all of the studies have been incorporated to be included in a plain language summary. The MECIR rationale advises:
“It is important that readers understand the date up to which the evidence provided by the review is current (e.g. 'The evidence is current to  MM YYYY.').  This should be based on the date of the search reported in the abstract. Do not include details of the search strategy (i.e. databases, search terms).”

TSCs involved in peer review might want to check the PLS to make sure that this standard is complied with. Thanks to Sheila Wallace for bringing this to our attention!
Timing is everything...
When should I submit records to CENTRAL in order to be sure they are published in the next edition of the Cochrane Library?

TSC Support have been asked about the deadlines for submitting records for publication in CENTRAL via the CRS each month. In order to ensure that records you add to your CRS segment for CENTRAL are published in the next issue, from February 2016 they should be submitted by midnight on the 15th of the month. If you wish to search CRSO in order to identify new RCTs, the best time to do that is around the 24th of the month when records submitted from CRS segments and fed in from PubMed and Embase will have been processed. CENTRAL records are uploaded to Wiley around the 20th of the month and appear in the next release of CLIB on the last working day of the month. Note that records are not processed on exactly the same date every month, but if you use these dates as a guide you will be able to deal with CENTRAL submissions and searches efficiently. 

December 2015 and January 2016 are exceptional months as the Medline end of year processing affects all timings. For these months you should ensure that records you add to your CRS segment for CENTRAL are submitted by midnight on the 10th of the month.
TSC Support over the Christmas period
Due to annual leave and Christmas closure days, the TSC Support inbox will close down at the end of the working day on the 23rd December 2015 and reopen on 4th January 2016.

We’ll be back in the New Year with lots of plans and new tips and hints. Continue to send us your questions and queries, or suggestions for topics for us to look at.

Season’s greetings to all Cochrane TSCs, see you again in 2016!
The TSC Support Team:
Liz Doney I Sam Faulkner I Ruth Foxlee
Anne Littlewood I Doug Salzwedel
TSC Support Website
TSC Support Website