The “EBM Movement”: Where Did it Come From, Where is it Going, and Why Does it Matter?

Social Epistemology 22 (4):425-431 (2008)
Abstract
Evidence-Based Medicine (EBM) has now been part of the dominant medical paradigm for 15 years, and has been frequently debated and progressively modified. One question about EBM that has not yet been considered systematically, and is now particularly timely, is the question of the novelty, or otherwise, of the principles and practices of EBM. We argue that answering this question, and the related question of whether EBM-type principles and practices are unique to medicine, sheds new light on EBM and has practical implications for those involved in all EBM. This is because one's answer to the question (whether explicit or implicit) affects the amount and type of funding and attention received by EBM, the extent to which EBM, and the generation, judgment and use of evidence more generally, can be appropriated by certain groups and questioned by others, and the extent to which truly unique socio-political developments in evidence, and in medicine more generally, are recognized and harnessed
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