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Trusted evidence. Informed decisions. Better health.
Issue 01 | October 2015
What is Cochrane Insurance Medicine
Cochrane Insurance Medicine (CIM) was established in 2015 to help decision-makers and professionals in a medical insurance context to make evidence-informed decisions. Insurance medicine makes health-related judgments on diagnosis, causality, prognosis and effectiveness of interventions in the context of insurance coverage.
Our Vision
The initiators of CIM envision decision-makers and professionals concerned with medical judgments on diagnosis, prognosis, and effectiveness of interventions in an insurance context to make evidence-informed decisions by using high quality Cochrane reviews of the best available evidence.
Our Aim
Our aim is to promote evidence-based best practices in insurance medicine. We want to achieve this by facilitating the production and dissemination of systematic reviews which support health and social care decisions on sick leave certification, disability evaluation, and return to work interventions.

For more details, please visit our webpage


Recent Activities

Our first attendance at a Cochrane Colloquium

We all kept busy during the Colloquium, maybe some of you met one of us during some sessions! Click here for the pdf version of our CIM poster.
We held a morning meeting to introduce our field to the community where we discussed common methodological issues with Cochrane friends from related groups. Jos Verbeek (Work Group) spoke about the importance of outcome measures. Maurits van Tulder (Back & Neck Group) explained the need to include insurance medicine related outcomes in reviews, as those are often overseen by review groups. Bernard Burnand (Cochrane Switzerland) talked about sickness duration. Thanks to Bernard, Jos and Maurits for their support.
If you would like to know a little more about insurance medicine and CIM as a field you can find the slides of Regina's presentation here.

From left to right: Regina Kunz, Jason Busse, Wout de Boer, Sandra Brouwer, Kristina Alexanderson, Bert Cornelius, Rebecca Weida
Upcoming Events

DICIM conference in Almere (NL)

On 5-6/11/2015 Dutch insurance physicians from private and public insurers meet at the Dutch International Congress on Insurance Medicine (DICIM). This is the first time we present and discuss Cochrane Insurance Medicine there.
Jan Hoving, Frederieke Schaafsma and Bert Cornelius from the Knowledge Centre for Insurance Medicine will present Cochrane and CIM as a field. they will later hold a discussion workshop about the information needs of insurance physicians and how CIM could be of help, with support from Wout de Boer and Rebecca Weida. The Dutch members of CIM will offer an information- table to their Dutch peers including a Dutch version of our CIM poster. We are curious to learn how our colleagues will receive the field.

Publications and Presentations

Getting people back to work

Nicole Vogel, a member of Swiss CIM, registered a protocol for a Cochrane review with high relevance to our field. One of the greatest priorities in insurance medicine is helping people to return to or stay in the work force to remain socially integrated and economically secure. By updating a pre-existing systematic review according to the collaboration's standards she is turning it into a Cochrane Review, together with Cochrane Work: Return to Work Coordination Programmes for Improving Return to Work in Workers on Sick-Leave

Do Cochrane Reviews cover endpoints related to Insurance Medicine?

Using 321 Cochrane Priority Reviews (5/2015) as sampling frame, Nicole Vogel and Rebecca Weida identified 122 reviews where health interventions potentially impact on endpoints relevant to insurance medicine: work ability/disability, sickness absence, prevention and evaluation of disability, occupational rehabilitation, return to work, and social integration of individuals with impairments. Preliminary results, presented at the Colloquium, show that only up to 15% of reviews with connection to insurance medicine included such outcomes relevant to insurance medicine. However, this is more than most of us anticipated.

Methodological research: non-significant factors can be important in SRs of predictive studies

Jason Busse from CIM Canada presented findings about the adjustment for non-significant factors in systematic reviews of predictive studies at this year's Colloquium. Often data is excluded from analysis if there is no evident (significant) association. This systematic exclusion risks overestimation of included factors. The study found that 51.3% out of the 115 study-sets failed to report the adjusted data for non-significant differences … read more

Workshop about systematic reviews during EUPHA conference in Milan

During the European Public Health Conference in Milan, Italy, Kristina Alexanderson participated in organizing a workshop with the title: Systematic reviews in Public Health fields: challenges and how to bridge with policy. It was a joint event between four EUPHA Sections, of which the Section of Social Security, Work and Health was one. During the workshop, CIM member Kristina Alexanderson held a presentation with the title: Problems encountered in systematic reviews regarding sickness absence/insurance medicine. The workshop was well attended, by researchers, practitioners, politicians, and representatives from Cochrane.

Contributors & Contributions

Cochrane Wikipedia Partnership

Cochrane has started a partnership with Wikipedia in 2014 - the most used source for medical information. Wikipedia Medicine aims to bring more high quality evidence into its articles and Cochrane has increased its efforts to disseminate research findings via social media and Wikipedia. Wikipedia is calling for volunteers from Cochrane to help increase the evidence in their articles and translating them. This is an exiting development, and we encourage those who are interested to get in touch with us or wikipedia directly.

Looking for contributors to help make CIM grow

As a new field we are always looking for contributors. If you would like to get involved there are many ways: Work on a review relevant to insurance medicine: raise awareness of Cochrane Insurance Medicine, write summaries of, or commentaries on, Cochrane Reviews on insurance medicine, help identify priorities for future reviews, translate reviews or plain language summaries into languages other than English, help to sustain funding for the Field, hand search journals. We are looking forward to hearing from you!

What are the challenges of an Insurance Physician?

CIM member Bert Cornelius (Insurance Physician at University Medical Centre Groningen, NL) tried to capture this in a comic...
Our next newsletter will be published in February 2016.
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