Dear friends

July was an action packed month and this issue had to become a joint July August issue. Sorry if you missed us! But I would now like to share some insights that we have gained, with you. In the last seven years, we have conducted around 130 workshops and delivered around 230 lectures on literature searching / reference management. We have been observing that practically no health professional, resident or student knows the must have skills for scientific searching of the literature. We do believe that there will be some people who do know these skills, but they are obviously a very small lot scattered across institutions. However, I have always wondered if hard core research professionals would need our training / help. I suspected that they do, but I was never sure. After a workshop in August I can say, that I am pretty sure they do. I was invited to be part of a five day workshop organized by The Union (IUATLD) – the organization that is involved in tuberculosis research, in collaboration with the Cochrane Infectious Diseases Group and a couple more entities. At this workshop, I took a half day session on searching and referencing. During and after this session, the participants expressed that they did not know these skills and were really grateful for having been able to learn all that they did. We now really believe that all organizations and individuals definitely need our workshops on an urgent basis. Individuals from The Union – India office have promised to organize our workshops for their research teams.

Recently I also have got involved with three teams that are working on writing systematic reviews and guidelines. Searching the literature for systematic reviews and guidelines requires very specialized skills. While I have learned these theories over the years, I am grateful to Dr Paul Garner of the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, who has assigned me a mentor who hand holds me as I work on these strategies. I also have some librarians who I know through the mailing list of the Medical Library Association of the USA, who will help / advise based on need.

These developments can make  significant difference in India’s medical research activities and also in patient care. Our progress has obviously rarely shown “instant gratification” results, but the deep, long term differences are showing up! And till we reach a tipping point – we continue with our efforts. We trust these will then bring major results.


Vasumathi Sriganesh


Did you know?

How often have we all wished that we could find an expert physician / surgeon to treat us or our loved ones? And most often we rely on our contacts and word of mouth recommendations. We found a resource – Expertscape  –  www.expertscape.com  that tackles this need, in a very interesting way! Started by a physician, it was launched in 2003, with major upgrades in 2009 and 2013. What is interesting about this? For any disease / condition, it searches PubMed and finds articles on these in the last 10 years. It assigns scores to each article, based on year of publication, article type and the journal in which it is published. It then tallies the scores and puts up results graphically, in the search results page

Expertscape has its limitations – which are very well tabulated. What we found interesting is that if health professionals learn about this tool, it will encourage them to write good research articles in good journals, as this encourages them to be found through this tool. When they write, they contribute to the research pool and society gets its benefits!



Interesting reading

The article: Translating Cochrane Reviews to Ensure that Healthcare Decision-Making is Informed by High-Quality Research Evidence

von Elm E, Ravaud P, Maclehose H, Mbuagbaw L, Garner P, Ried J, Bonfill X. PLoS Med. 2013;10(9):e1001516

We discovered this article recently when our Founder was part of the Tuberculosis Systematic Review workshop earlier in August. There are two very important reasons to read this article. One is that it discusses the need for translating Cochrane Reviews to ensure that healthcare decisions are based on high quality research evidence. The second is that it explains the difference between a review article, a systematic review and a Cochrane systematic review in great detail. It is very important for all our authors to read and understand these differences. Often authors use the words Systematic Review in the title, when their article is often a review of literature or a plain narrative review. This article describes these differences very well in a clear table. It was used at the workshop to teach participants about these differences. Thank you Dr Paul Garner for sharing this!



Dr. Neha Sanwalka, PhD Health Sciences, MSc Dietics

Director NutriCanvas: Workshops, Research & Biostatistics  shares her story:

Any words of praise would not justify the amazing experience that I had learning “Mendeley” from QMed. The use and functioning of the software was covered in great detail. All our doubts were cleared & was absolute fun to learn Mendeley. It has eased referencing and considerably reduced the amount of time I spend writing papers. I wish I knew of Mendeley while I was doing PhD, it would have atleast reduced 7-8 full days of work hours of me then. I would totally recommend that every researcher take up the course on Mendeley by QMed. It’s a must for all who write papers. Thank you mam for conducting such an essential course.”



What we did – July and August 2015

Training Programs / Talks / Consultative Meetings

We reached out to more than 800 health science students and professionals through our workshops and lectures between July and August 2015.

I) Talks on literature searching / referencing /citing at

• DY Patil Medical College, Pune – 5th July

• LTMMCH (Sion hospital), Mumbai- 8th July

• INHS Asvini, Mumbai – 13th July

• LTMMCH (Sion hospital), Mumbai- 15th July

• LTMMCH (Sion hospital), Mumbai- 22nd July

• Seth GS Medical College and KEM Hospital, Mumbai – 22nd July

• BMJ India’s Medical Writing Workshop, at Bangalore Baptist Hospital, Bangalore – 26th July

• LTMMCH (Sion hospital), Mumbai- 29th July

• LTMMCH (Sion hospital), Mumbai- 5th Aug

• CONFLUENCE 2015- a UG conference organized by Seth GS Medical College and KEM Hospital, Mumbai. – 7th Aug

• CONFLUENCE 2015- a UG conference organized by Seth GS Medical College and KEM Hospital, Mumbai. – 8th Aug.

• Tata Memorial Hospital, Mumbai – 22nd Aug

• KEM Hospital (Anesthesiology Department), Mumbai – 25th Aug

• LTMMCH (Sion hospital) , Mumbai – 26th Aug

• LTMMCH (Sion hospital) , Mumbai – 26th Aug

• The Continuing Dental Education program organized by the Mumbai and Navi Mumbai chapter of the Indian Prosthodontic Society for PG Dental Students at Nair Dental College, Mumbai – 31st Aug.

II) Workshops@ Institutions

• One full day workshop on Literature Searching and Reference Management, at NKP Institute of Medical Sciences and Research Centre, Nagpur for a group of 25 PG students

• Half day interactive session on Literature Search and Reference Management at Medicon 2015 an annual under-graduate student conference (initiated by INFORMER ) for a group of 35 UG students from across India.

• One full day workshop on Literature Searching and Reference Management at Sri Devraj Urs Medical College (SDUMC), Kolar, Karnataka for a group of  25 PG and Faculty.

• Half-day PubMed Basics workshop at Conventus 2015, a UG conference organized by Kasturba Medical College, Manipal for a group of  35 UG students across India.

• Half-day workshop “Searching for Studies”  at ‘The Union” – Primer on systematic reviews in Tuberculosis, Chennai for a group of 30 practicing doctors and research personnel.

• Half-day workshop on Literature Search and Reference Management at ILLUMINATI 2015, an annual UG conference by AFMC , Pune for a group of 30 under- graduate medical students across India.

III) Workshops@QMed

PubMed Basics workshop for a group of four pre-PG students from Grant Medical College, Mumbai

Participant Feedback

• I came across something like this for the first time and throughout the session I thought “Why didn’t someone teach me this earlier?”It makes it so much easier to swim through the pool of knowledge that the web offers, to reach what we want. Would love to have more such sessions. I will apply all of this and suggest it to my friends also. – Vini Talwar (UG student- Medicon 2015)

• This was a really helpful session. I am looking forward to using PubMed and other search methods in ways I never before did. This will definitely help in getting way more relevant search results with minimum input. – Nupur (UG student, Conventus 2015)

• Thoroughly enjoyed the course. Learnt a lot and I will make it a point to practice. I am sure it will help reduce the effort and time in searching articles. – Suraj Panjwani (Pre-PG student)

• This workshop has made the clumsy, time taking, exhausting Literature search far easy which would make research more interesting.- Dr Bhanu Prakash (Assistant Professor, SDUMC, Kolar)

• This was a very informative session. I have used PubMed before also but it was not so easy to handle. Reference management software tool is very new for me. But it seems very useful and promising for my further researches. Yogesh Sharma, ILLUMINATI 2015


From our Picture Gallery

WS@QMed- A group of four pre-PG students

The Union 2015

Medicon 2015

Conventus 2015


Copyright © QMed Knowledge Foundation – Trust registered with the Charity Commissioner Mumbai – Registration No: E-24663