"Research in Biomedicine and Health"
The new curriculum of the School of Medicine, University of Split, introduced in October 2010, integrates the subjects of medical statistics, medical informatics and research methodology into the course entitled "Research in Biomedicine and Health" (RBH). The course includes direct teaching of how to search, recognize and critically assess scientific articles, training in the application of „evidence-based medicine“, as well as information on the basics of quality of health care.
The practice of evidence-based medicine, assessment of the evidence, validity of arguments and quantitative comprehension and acquisition of knowledge, skills and attitudes are impossible without the understanding and application of computer and statistical skills. Statistical assessmentt, as well as the use of information technology, are inseparable parts of planning, execution and understanding of biomedical questions – which provide the knowledge equally indispensable for medical students and practicing physicians.
The body of medical knowledge, transformed into guidelines for clinical practice, is often stored in the systematic reviews and meta-analyses, from where it can be retrieved, assessed, and applied in everyday practice. Those publications collect, validate, and integrate all research information available on a certain medical question, synthesize them in accord to well-defined methodology, and display them as clear, comprehensible and objective response on the effectiveness of a given intervention, drug or procedure. Systematic reviews are the best guide for clinical practice, where they have replaced mechanical following of own „clinical experience“, authorities, or textbooks, which are both too general and outdated. Systematic reviews as guidelines for clinical practice are the foundation of the new medical paradigm of „evidence-based medicine“. The RBH course, in all forms of knowledge and skills offered and required, empowers the student of medicine to act according to the principles of evidence-based medicine. Medicine is science, in its every detail, and cannot be understood, learned or practiced without the science and technology of evidence-based medicine.
All the above is summarized in the recommendations of the European medical community which in istranslated into Article 27 of the Bill on Regulated Professions and Recognition of Foreign Professional Qualifications of the Republic of Croatia. The Bill requires from every medical school to endow to its students at least four competencies, of which the first one reads:
“Adequate knowledge of science upon which medicine is based, and good comprehension of scientific methods, including the principles of biological functions and assessment of scientifically determined facts and analysis of research data.”
The RBH course fully complies with this legal obligation, enabling students of medicine in Split to acquire the same knowledge and skills as they could obtain in the best educational centers in Europe and USA.