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Journal clubs in clinical medicine
  1. S R Jones,
  2. M M Harrison,
  3. I W F Crawford,
  4. B Ali,
  5. E Beattie,
  6. S Carley,
  7. M Davies,
  8. A Ghosh,
  9. B Martin,
  10. H Paul,
  11. R Boyd,
  12. K Mackway-Jones,
  13. R J Morton
  1. Department of Emergency Medicine, Manchester Royal Infirmary, Oxford Road, Manchester M13 9WL, UK
  1. Correspondence to:
 Professor K Mackway-Jones

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Journal clubs in clinical medicine have long been recognised as a useful tool for keeping up to date with new developments.1 More recently they have been used as a tool for the teaching of critical appraisal,2 which for emergency medicine trainees in the UK is an important part of their final fellowship examination.

Since the inception of our journal club3 we have noticed a subtle change in both the quality and quantity of papers in the journals that we chose to review. This made it more difficult to combine both the educational value of critical appraisal and keeping up to date with the relevant advances in our specialty so that we can apply this to our practice of evidence based medicine.

To address this we undertook to review our choice of journals to try to increase our yield of relevant articles. After finding a complete journal list from Medline a consensus opinion was reached on the basis of relevance to practice, past experience of quality of papers, and personal choice. The number of times per year that the journals, or groups of journals, are reviewed depends on the number of issues per year and the likelihood of finding papers relevant to emergency medicine in them.

The complete list of journals and their review rates is shown in table 1.

We believe that all departments with a journal club should regularly revise their selection of journals in order to increase the value of this important educational process.

Table 1

Frequency of journal review