Journals Library

Abstract

Abstract

An abstract must be submitted as part of the report and will appear on MEDLINE and other appropriate bibliographic databases.This should not be more than 500 words (please include a word count).

Abstracts should include data (relative risks, odds ratios, and confidence intervals) to support statements of efficacy or cost-effectiveness. 

Your abstract should include the following headings:

  • Background
  • Objective(s)
  • Design
  • Setting
  • Participants
  • Interventions
  • Main outcome measures
  • Data sources (if applicable)
  • Review methods (if applicable)
  • Results
  • Limitations
  • Conclusions
  • Future work
  • Study registration
  • Funding details

Reporting of cost effectiveness results in abstracts 

  1. The NIHR Journals Library contains research reports, not technology appraisals. They should therefore not make judgements about what is worthwhile or what would be value for money for the NHS.
  2. Cost-effectiveness is measured on a spectrum, not a dichotomy. The dichotomy comes with cost-effectiveness thresholds, as used implicitly or explicitly in many healthcare decision-making processes.
  3. NICE, by contrast, does work with dichotomies. Its base cost-effectiveness threshold is £20k/QALY, although that can increase in various circumstances to £30k, £50k or £100k per QALY – or even more.
  4. This means that authors in abstracts in the NIHR Journals Library:
    1. Should normally report the costs (usually £) and benefits (usually QALYs) in numbers, with confidence intervals
    2. Might want to say that something is more or less cost-effective, or similarly cost-effective (the difference being that such language acknowledges a spectrum)
    3. Should not say “it is cost effective” or “it is not cost-effective” (those both dichotomise, implying a threshold)
  5. This advice needs to be read in conjunction with the aims of the study and applied thoughtfully.
  6. These principles also apply to the headlines, written by NETSCC