QMedCONNECT Newsletter: January 2011


Dear friends,

The first month of the New year simply flew by! For us at QMedKF, it was a month focused on our Foundation Day, especially because this year we wanted to make it a Students' event. We held an essay competition and then had a panel discussion on the day of our event on the topic "Getting Students and Health Science Libraries Closer"! The event was a great success. It was also fun making phone calls to the prize winners (all outstation) and having our invitees applaud them! Congratulations Ravi Kant, Kaustav and Purav! I'd like to thank all those who participated in the competition and all invitees who joined us for the event or sent us their best wishes!

We'd also like to highlight a Students' initiative - "the Cochrane Students' Journal Club" which started in the month of January, and we have a good role to play in this. It really is very exciting working with students!

Speaking of students, there is a very exciting conference coming up in May. Medicon 2001 is a conference organized by INFORMER for Undergraduate students in health sciences. It is also organized completely by students! This year it will be in Grant Medical College, Mumbai. We hope to see a lot of students attending the event and having a great learning cum fun experience! QMedKF will be involved in the preconference workshop on EBM and we are also happy to be offering small bits of assistance in many ways.

In addition, the month of January involved delivering a keynote address at a medical librarians' conference in Hyderabad, one training program and a few lectures.

This issue's "Article of the month" highlights the need for better reporting of trials and reviews, The Editor of the BMJ mentions this dire need and quotes a Reviewer who says that if we do not have the best reporting of trials, we will need to seek the raw data of every trial! Food for thought...

Vasumathi Sriganesh


Do You Know?

The Cochrane Students' Journal Club

This is a brand new initiative to sensitize students to the concepts and practice of Evidence Based Medicine, and to critically read medical literature outside their key areas of study. Available at http://csjconline.informer.org.in/, it will follow a regular schedule. On the 1st of every month a Clinical scenario with a PICO style question will be posted. Students are encouraged to post their search strategies and the best review they find on the question. On the 7th, moderators will post the best review and the search strategies (this part will be a contribution from QMedKF). Next, students are invited to post their appraisal of the topic. On the 15th of the month, an expert reviewer from the moderators will post his/her appraisal. After this students can discuss the appraisal, ask questions / seek guidance.

This journal club was conceptualized by Akshay Sharma a recent medical graduate from KMC Mangalore and has a team of moderators & reviewers comprising senior medical faculty, some of them working with Cochrane groups, enthusiastic students and Vasumathi Sriganesh from QMedKF!


Forthcoming Training Programs/Lectures:

5th February, 2011 - PubMed Advanced, New Delhi (Sponsored event)

6th February, 2011 - PubMed Basics, Bangalore (Sponsored event)

17th February, 2011 - UpToDate - at Sir Gangaram Hospital, Delhi

19th February, 2011 - (Tentative) - Lecture at the National Conference on Data Mining in the fields of Agro informatics, Medical Informatics, and Bioinformatics, at the Allana Institute of Management Studies, Pune

21st / 26th February, 2011 - (Tentative) - Lecture on literature searching at Bharatiya Vidyapeeth, Pune


Other Events of Interest

South Asian Cochrane Network & Centre - Workshops on Systematic Reviews - More details

Clinical Research Workshop Series. Conducted by the Public Health Foundation of India. More details

Medicon 2011- May 11th - 14th 2011: Medicon is an annual international research conference for undergraduate medical students organized in India. It presents a platform for young scientists and future doctors to meet, interact and present their research. More details

If you are organizing or know about other conferences, pre-conference workshops or training programs related to medical research, do let us know; we would like to include these in our website and newsletter.


Resources for You:

Supercourse Lectures- Supercourse is a repository of lectures on Global Health and Prevention designed to improve the teaching of Prevention. Supercourse is a library of 3623 lectures in 30 languages. It has been produced at the WHO Collaborating Center University of Pittsburgh, with core developers Ronald LaPorte and others. 

Our Foundation has received a CD of entire content, and are distributing it for free to institutions during our training programs and also to anyone requesting for the same. This will be useful if you do not wish to view all lectures on the Internet for various reasons. Please get in touch with us atinfo@qmedkf.org.in if you wish to receive a copy.

Article of the Month

Godlee F.

Goodbye PubMed, hello raw data

BMJ 2011; 342:d212

The editor of BMJ writes about the H1N1 influenza epidemic in the last year and discusses about the effectiveness of antivirals and the drug oseltamivir. She quotes another BMJ article (BMJ 2011; 342:c7258) where the authors Jefferson and Doshi, who were reviewers of a Cochrane review on the same topic, were unable to get the data from the trial that they covered they needed to validate their conclusion about the efficacy of the antiviral. She goes on to explain that these reviewers while compiling a list of trials located a large trial which was not covered in the regulatory documents! The editor emphasizes the reviewer's comments - that if trial reports are incomplete (and many seem to be!), then reviewers need to have all access to raw trial data.

She quotes another BMJ article (BMJ 2011; 342:c7258) where the authors Jefferson and Doshi, who were reviewers of a Cochrane review on the same topic, were unable to get the data for the trial that they covered. They needed this data to validate their conclusion about the efficacy of the antiviral.

QMedKF's comment: Has getting credible information really got easier with the Internet? We only seem to be uncovering more lacunae!


What we did – January 2011

Foundation Day- January 29, 2011

We celebrated the 3rd Anniversary of our Foundation on the 29th of January, 2011 at the Quest Foundation Wellness Centre, Sion. First we would like to thank the owner Mr. Ajay Sheth for this wonderful venue and Mr Shreyas Shah, the Manager, and his team members for the excellent support they provided us. The main focus of the event was a panel discussion by students from Grant Medical College and LTMC and a recent graduate of Goa Medical College. The theme was "Getting Students and Health Science Libraries Closer". Earlier we had invited students to write an essay on the theme. Thirteen students from various colleges in India sent in their entries and the following won prizes:

I Prize - Ravi Kant Narayan (Bokaro)
II Prize - Kaustav Bera (Kolkata)
III Prize - Purav Mody (Surat)

The prize winners get books of their choice worth Rs. 2500/-, Rs. 2000/ and Rs. 1500/- respectively. In addition to these prizes - the thirteen participants become Friends of the Foundation for one year, (as soon as we officially launch the program). 

The panel discussion brought forth a lot of inputs from students about their perception of libraries - both good and bad, and they highlighted what they would have wished to have from their libraries! They all expressed willingness to volunteer to help with libraries and one student shared his experiences on how they raised funds for their library! For more details about our event do check the report on our website. Also please do read he prize winning essays and a transcript of the panel discussion by Parvati Iyer.


Training Programs / Talks: Literature searching:

January 15, 2011 - Training program - PubMed Advanced in Mumbai - for Nephrologists (sponsored event)

January 21st and 22nd, 2011 - Our CEO delivered a keynote address "Are we getting a Return on Investments made in our medical libraries" at the "National Conference on Management of Health Science Libraries" held at the Kamineni Hospitals, Hyderabad. She also delivered a lecture on Literature searching at the conference as well as at the hospital's Nursing college, and was part of a panel discussion at the conference.

January 31, 2011 - Lecture on literature searching at the Seven Hills Hospital, Mumbai


Document Delivery of Journal Articles

In the month of January 2011, we delivered 121 articles to individual members, libraries and corporate clients. The total number of documents delivered since April 2010 is 1157.



We accept donations by cheques in favour of Quality Medical Knowledge Foundation. You may send the cheques to our address, or you could ask us for our account details. You will get the applicable IT Exemption for donations under Section 80G of the Indian Income Tax Act.


Quote of the Month

Libraries allow children to ask questions about the world and find the answers. And the wonderful thing is that once a child learns to use a library, the doors to learning are always open.

- Laura Bush - 


Directory of Indian Medical Sites (www.indianmedicalsites.in)

We have added 25 new sites in January and the total number of sites is 3240. 

We invite volunteers to add new sites. If you would like to help, do write to us and we will send you a set of instructions that will make it easier for you to work. Please write "Volunteering for Indian Medical Sites" in the Subject of the email.


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