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Table 2 Consumer roles and identified impacts on outputs

From: A systematic scoping review of the evidence for consumer involvement in organisations undertaking systematic reviews: focus on Cochrane

Consumer roles (defined by role in review or organisation)

Consumer activities in review process

Consumer roles in increasing accessibility of reviews

Consumer roles in knowledge transfer

Impacts identified

Membership of editorial teams

Hand searching

Plain language summary preparation

Coordination of workshops, seminars and presentations on CRG activities during consumer organisation conferences

Use of consumer-oriented/more relevant outcomes

Consumer coordination

Obtaining information

Removal of unfriendly jargon from synopses & other documentation

Participation in working groups

Changes in language – greater accessibility

Review authorship

Peer review of protocols and reviews

Collaboration with external consumer organisations to publish synopses


Informing of/altering methodology

Peer reviewer

Priority setting


Raising awareness of evidence-based healthcare

Adding “depth” to the review

Advisory group member

Incorporation of patient-derived outcomes

Publication of synopses/other CRG documentation in languages other than English

Identifying the needs for non-professional consumer involvement

Better prioritisation of review topics

Stakeholder (various stages)

Input into relevance of review question


Recruiting others

Increased relevance of review

Member of the public


Peer mentoring

Increased timeliness


Training other consumers

Reduction in bias


Input into funding bids

Broader and more inclusive literature searches


Developing partnerships with other relevant organisations

More clearly defined research questions


Contributions to newsletter

Identification of additional included studies


Preparing decision aids for patients

Increased depth, relevance and usefulness of review


Indirect benefits to all involved