Evidence Based Practice Resources: An Overview

They have been called “best practices,” “effective practices,” “promising practices,” and  “evidence based practices” (EBPs). Whatever the “nom du jour,” the emphasis continues to focus on identifying what works and funding programs that demonstrate effective practices and strong outcomes. With a shortage of funds for programs at local, state and national levels, the competition for those funds is stronger now than ever before. The programs that demonstrate meaningful outcomes, and creative and cost effective solutions to community needs will be able to emerge as models, garnering stronger, more diversified funding and support.

One way that your organization can gain an edge is to know the important sources for evidence based practices (EBPs) in your field. Study these models and practices, comparing them to your programs. Analyze outcomes, practices and any available data as a comparison tool to see how your programs compare to national standards in your field. In some cases, you may have a program practice that can contribute something new to the field. If that’s the case, please share information with me at aegan@cybermesa.com. You may also find that you can use the information on this and other websites to build you own effectiveness. And we hope that this information and your own experience will inform your ongoing conversations about what works in the field.

Some great resources we’ve found include the Urban Institute, the What Works Clearinghouse, the Community Tool Box of the Work Group for Community Health and Development at the University of Kansas.  and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS).

The federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid have continued to focus on funding practices that have strong health outcomes and cost savings. And the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality has a comprehensive catalogue of effective practices and quality measures.

Evidence based practices in programming for older adults can be found at the National Council on Aging’s website, and other health related sites. The Program for All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE) has pioneered many of the most effective community-based care practices.

Community corrections effective practices and evidence based practices in restorative justice can be found through the Center for Restorative Justice, the Justice Management Institute and other research organizations.

The Administration for Children and Families of the U.S. DHHS has a number of websites that provide information about effective practices, including the CY&F Evidence Based Practices Registry, and the National Clearinghouse for Youth and Families. And, national funders like the Annie E. Casey and Wallace Foundations have information on effective practices in programs for children, youth and families.