Prioritising our work


Cochrane Airways aims to produce a curated selection of reviews that are useful to people making decisions about living with a respiratory disease. In the early days of Cochrane we published titles as proposed by author teams who wanted to complete reviews. We also get requests to publish reviews from guideline producers and patients. Although we still accept titles proposed by authors, we are using open and transparent methods of involving stakeholders to make decisions about what reviews we should be doing. If you would like to propose a title to be considered in our priority-setting work, please contact us.

Click here for some FAQs about priority-setting.


Current priority-setting work

Cochrane Airways Priority-Setting Advisory Group

We ran a survey for members of the public including patients, carers, healthcare professionals and researchers. We asked for their questions about living with a chronic lung disease. The survey was called ‘Your Lungs, Your questions’ and had the hashtag #AskCochraneAirways. We got over 150 responses, mainly from patients. We found that there were 99 unique questions.

We then formed a priority-setting advisory group to help us make sense of these uncertainties. The advisory group includes patients, carers, health care professionals, researchers and people from lung charities. They approved the list of uncertainties to be prioritised and ranked them in a modified Delphi survey. The top ten uncertainties can be found here. We will then be working on priorities that arise through literature surveillance, the updating classification project, and submitted by guideline producers or other stakeholders. For further information see our plan and the full report.


COPD patient group - NIHR programme grant - ongoing

We formed a Patient Advisory Group including people living with COPD being treated at St George’s Hospital, London. They told us that air pollution, living with multiple illnesses, remembering to take their medication and attending organised exercise classes (called pulmonary rehabilitation) was really important to them. We used these priorities to shape the programme grant application, which was successful. We meet twice a year with the patients and so far they have been hugely helpful in developing the protocols for the reviews.  We are currently working with them to complete these reviews and disseminate them.

Updating classification project
See here for further details

Older priority-setting work

Prioritisation project 2012
We undertook a pragmatic prioritisation process in 2012. Our approach involved four different strands: 1) understanding patient uncertainties about asthma; 2) piloting a prioritisation tool to assess whether individual reviews require updating; 3) surveying the CAG Editorial Board; and 4) horizon scanning for new review titles. Full details of our work can be found in our open access publication in the Journal of Clinical Epidemiology

Asthma workshop October 2014
We held an asthma workshop with 15 people affected by asthma and 5 healthcare professionals. A full report of the day is available here.  The purpose of the workshop was to identify 10 review titles to be complete for our asthma programme grant (NIHR 13/89/14) which can be found here together with information about what was said and some further information. What was great about this day was hearing people’s issues about living with asthma. Asthma is a long term condition in which people have to find a way to cope with and they want a normal life– to be able to plan a trip away, to get to school and pass their exams, not to be stuck in on the couch anxious about triggers.

Organising a face-to-face workshop is enjoyable and worthwhile, but it is time-consuming and costly. Here is a link to some details about the practicalities for other groups who might consider doing same.