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Cochrane Malaysia operates as a network of sites around the country, with the coordinating site based at Penang Medical College.

The other network sites are the Institute for Medical Research, Melaka-Manipal Medical College, Julius Centre at University of Malaya and Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM). Cochrane Malaysia aims to make a major contribution to evidence-informed health care, particularly in Malaysia but also internationally. Prof Jacqueline Ho of Penang Medical College is the first Convenor of Cochrane Malaysia.

The Cochrane Collaboration, which recently celebrated its 20th year, has been described in The Lancet as an enterprise that rivals the human genome project in its potential implications for modern medicine. The Cochrane Library has been described as the single most reliable source of information about healthcare interventions. It has an impact factor of 6.03 and is ranked 13th in the “medicine, general and internal” category.

Cochrane is an international network of more than 30,000 dedicated people from over 130 countries. Volunteers prepare high-quality systematic reviews of healthcare interventions to help people make well-informed decisions about health care and health policy. A systematic review summarises the results of available carefully designed healthcare studies and provides a high level of evidence on the effectiveness of healthcare treatments and drugs.

Volunteers work together to help healthcare providers, policy-makers, patients and other relevant groups to make well-informed decisions about health care by preparing, updating and promoting the accessibility of the Cochrane Reviews. Over 5,000 reviews have been published and these form part of the Cochrane Library. The work of the Cochrane Collaboration is internationally recognised as the benchmark for high-quality information about the effectiveness of health care. The Collaboration’s vision is that healthcare decision-making throughout the world will be informed by high-quality research evidence.

In the last two to three years, the number of Malaysian authors who contribute to Cochrane reviews increased from just three in 2002 to 265 in 2015.

Part of the Malaysian branch’s role is to provide training to healthcare professionals, patients and others on how to access and use the reviews. There are also plans to train members of the media on the reviews’ impact on the general public.

One of the recent roles of Cochrane Malaysia is to translate the plain language summaries of Cochrane Reviews, ‘Cochrane Summaries’ into Bahasa Malaysia. You can read these here: http://www.cochrane.org/ms/evidence. Please visit us on Facebook and like our Facebook page. https://www.facebook.com/CochraneMalaysia/

Malaysian Cochrane Network Members, from left: Prof Jackie Ho, PMC; Prof Hans Van Rostenberghe, USM; Dr Nor Asiah, IMR; Assoc Prof Moy Foong Ming, UM; Prof Adi Negara Lufti, MMMC.

Malaysian Cochrane Network Coordinating Group, from left: Prof Jackie Ho, PMC; Prof Hans Van Rostenberghe, USM; Dr Nor Asiah Mohamad, IMR; Assoc Prof Moy Foong Ming, UM; Prof Adi Negara Lufti, MMMC.