COVID-19 is a rapidly evolving situation. When working in different community settings, follow CDC guidance External Web Site Icon to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Visit External Web Site Icon for the latest public health information.

Evidence Gaps

Find evidence gaps for each systematic review under the “WHAT THE TASK FORCE FOUND” tab on the intervention summary page. Use the search engine to identify specific approaches or the drop down menu to browse Community Guide topics.

What are Evidence Gaps?

Each Community Guide systematic review includes a list of critical evidence gaps that limit the CPSTF’s ability to answer questions about the intervention approach:

  • Will it work for everyone? How might it affect populations differently?
  • Will it work everywhere? Is it more effective in certain settings?
  • Are some intervention components more important than others? Does it matter who delivers the intervention?
  • What are the economic benefits? What are intervention costs, and what is the return on investment? Is it cost-effective?

How Can Researchers Use Evidence Gaps?

Filling identified evidence gaps can make a significant positive impact on public health, health disparities, and healthcare costs. Researchers and program evaluators can review identified evidence gaps relevant to their research and develop studies and real-world evaluations. If the results of their research or evaluation are published, the publications become part of the evidence the CPSTF will review when it updates relevant recommendations.

How Can Funding Organizations Use Evidence Gaps?

Agencies and organizations that fund research can highlight identified evidence gaps as priority areas in their funding announcements. The resulting research or evaluation studies, when taken together, may themselves contribute significant information to fill specific gaps.