ACP Journal Club is dead…long live ACP Journal ClubPDF
ACP J Club. 2008 Mar-Apr;148:A8. doi:10.7326/ACPJC-2008-148-2-A08
ACP Journal Club is about to die in its current forms of existence, as a stand-alone print publication and electronic “lookup” database. But there is no need to mourn, ACP Journal Club will be reincarnated in May, with its best virtues intact, and some new features as well.
The print version of ACP Journal Club will become “Best Evidence: ACP Journal Club,” a monthly feature of Annals of Internal Medicine (alternating with “In the Clinic”), beginning with the 20 May 2008 issue of Annals—so this is the last stand-alone print edition of ACP Journal Club. Best Evidence will include an editorial, 12 abstracts and commentaries, and a page of “Other Articles Noted.” The modus operandi for selecting and abstracting articles will remain the same, but the monthly schedule will allow more timely presentation of important studies.
A much more substantial change will take place for electronic access to high-quality and clinically relevant articles. The enhancements are guided by the following “what-if” questions:
• What if you had alerts about important new research articles and systematic reviews, finely tailored to your own clinical-practice interests?
• What if you had a lookup service for finding current best evidence that recognized you and tailored the search for information most relevant for your clinical interests as well as informing you about what your peers are paying most attention to?
• What if you could easily link to other ACP resources, such as Annals and PIER?
• What if this service was free to you as a membership benefit of the ACP (or at a reasonable price if you are not a member)?
The ACP Board of Regents approved a proposal that will provide this tailor-made service, ACP Journal Club PLUS, for you. The decision was based on research documenting that College members are increasingly using electronic media for information gathering. According to the 2007 ACP membership survey, nearly 80% of ACP members use the Web at least a few times a month to access journal articles; nearly 60% access articles via the Web at least a few times a week. More than 50% of our members responding to an earlier survey use a hand-held device for clinical care at least once a week. E-mail is now a viable means of alerting a significant majority of ACP members to the availability of new information; as of December 2007, 71% have given ACP a valid e-mail address.
ACP Journal Club PLUS is the product of many meetings of special ACP committees, considering matters of content, format, finances, and marketing, and I would like to thank everyone involved for their valuable suggestions and time. Thanks also to the 91 ACP members who participated in the beta test of the service during November and December 2007. They provided many useful comments and advice, leading to new features or enhancement of existing features. Those of you who prefer print will have even better access to the content in its special monthly section of Annals. ACP Journal Club abstracts and commentaries will continue to be integrated into other products, especially Ovid's Evidence-Based Medicine Reviews.
We look forward to continuing ACP Journal Club in our new home in Annals and to providing you with a personalized version of ACP Journal Club PLUS. Join us at Internal Medicine 2008 in Washington, DC, for the official launch—drop by the ACP booth and kick the tires!
R. Brian Haynes, MD, PhD, MACP