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Table 1 General comparison of rapid review versus systematic review approaches a

From: Evidence summaries: the evolution of a rapid review approach

  Rapid review Systematic review
Timeframe b ≤ 5 weeks 6 months to 2 years
Question Question specified a priori (may include broad PICOS) Often a focused clinical question (focused PICOS)
Sources and searches Sources may be limited but sources/strategies made explicit Comprehensive sources searched and explicit strategies
Selection Criterion-based; uniformly applied Criterion-based
Appraisal Rigorous; critical appraisal (SRs only) Rigorous; critical appraisal
Synthesis Descriptive summary/categorization of the data Qualitative summary +/- meta-analysis
Inferences Limited/cautious interpretation of the findings Evidence-based
  1. aSpecific to the KTA program - other groups have experimented with other approaches of rapid review and will therefore have other differences; bPrimary difference; other potentially important differences are noted in the cells. PICOS = population, interventions, comparators, outcomes and study designs; SR = systematic review.