Consumer Network
Consumer & communication strategies

Seeking Patient Partner for Guideline Panel on using antibiotics for skin abscess - 3 months, approx 10 hours total

Skills: Consumer Input, Protocol Development, Review - Consumer, Summary of Findings Tables

Who are we?

The BMJ RapidRecs Group is looking for patient partners to be on a guideline panel for a rapid guideline. This project is under the WikiRecs initiative, where our mandate is to translate potentially practice changing evidence into trustworthy, international guidelines in a short time frame, which are developed by a team of clinicians, methodologists, and patients.

What is the project?

The guideline question is: In patients with skin abscesses (especially small ones ~2cm) that are treated with incision and drainage, do antibiotics improve outcomes relative to no antibiotics? The WikiRecs initiative is a project with the MAGIC research and innovation program ( Under the WikiRecs initiative, we are doing a series of guidelines with the BMJ, entitled BMJ RapidRecs, described in a video here: With the BMJ RapidRecs, we have worked with patient partners for four guidelines, summarized in an editorial here:

Who are we looking for?

The ideal patient partner would be someone who has experience as, or a carer for, someone who has had abscesses (especially small ones ~2cm) that are treated with incision and drainage.

What is required?

The time commitment would be approximately 3 months, and the total active involvement time is approximately 8-10+ hours (depending how involved you would like to be). The tasks include: 1) introduction call about the guideline involvement process and the commitments from the patient partners (30-45 minutes), 2) review and provide feedback on the systematic review protocol, to identify and prioritize patient-important outcomes (45+ minutes), 3) participate in an introductory session to explain the evidence from the systematic review (generated by separate team), and answer any questions you may have (60-90 minutes), 4) participate in a teleconference with the guideline panel (clinicians, methodologists, patient partners) and draft recommendations (120 minutes), and 4) review and provide feedback to the guideline manuscript and decision aids (60+ minutes). All communication is online. This guideline group is based in Hamilton, Canada. No specific skills are required - we have worked with partners who had experience with Cochrane systematic reviews, and partners who did not. We provide training and are happy to answer any questions you may have, so that you feel confident contributing to the discussion.


The rapid recommendations group aims to publish guidelines within 90 days, thus our timelines move quickly, although there is not much commitment of time (about 10 hours).

Important note

WikiRecs and The BMJ have a strict policy regarding financial and professional/intellectual conflicts of interests. All guideline panel members (clinicians, methodologists, patient partners) must be approved by the WikiRecs executive and The BMJ before participating in the project. Our goal is to have a panel that is able to objectively review the evidence and draft recommendations without bias.

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