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Aug 12 -- The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) invites comment by October 11, 2022 regarding a planned request that the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) re-approve the proposed information collection project “The Systematic Review Data Repository (SRDR) Platform.”

Since 1997, the AHRQ Evidence-based Practice Center (EPC) Program has been reviewing relevant scientific information on a wide spectrum of clinical and health services topics to produce various types of evidence reports. A majority of these evidence reports are systematic reviews (SRs), which are used as evidence bases for clinical practice guidelines, research agendas, healthcare coverage, and other health related policies. Performing SRs is costly in time, labor, and money. Moreover, there is an increasing expectation of quicker turnaround in producing SRs to accommodate the fast moving pace of innovations and new scientific discoveries in healthcare. Some SRs overlap or are duplicated; independent teams of SR producers often extract data from the same studies, resulting in replication of work. Current methodology makes it difficult to harness and reuse previous work when updating SRs.

In an effort to reduce the economic burden of conducting SRs, the EPC program undertook development of a collaborative, Web-based repository of systematic review data called the Systematic Review Data Repository (SRDR). The OMB Control Number for this data collection is 0935-0244, which was last approved by OMB on October 16, 2019.

This resource serves as both an archive and data extraction tool, shared among organizations and individuals producing SRs worldwide, enabling the creation of a central database of SR data. This database is collaboratively vetted, freely accessible, and integrates seamlessly with reviewers' existing workflows, with the ultimate goal of facilitating the efficient generation and update of evidence reviews, and thus speeding and improving evidence-based policy-making with regards to health care.

Note that the SRDR system was upgraded during the last period of OMB clearance and is now designated as SRDR+. We will use the term “SRDR platform” to collectively denote the various upgraded iterations of the platform.

The SRDR project aims to achieve the following goals:

(1) Create online easy-to-use Web-based tools for conducting systematic reviews to facilitate extraction of data from primary studies;
(2) Develop an open-access searchable archive of key questions addressed in systematic reviews;
(3) Maintain a public repository of primary study data including provision of technical support for repository users; and
(4) Develop a process for making summary data from systematic reviews digitally shareable to end-users.

This study is being conducted by AHRQ through its contractor, Brown University, pursuant to AHRQ's statutory authority to conduct and support research on healthcare and on systems for the delivery of such care, including activities with respect to the quality, effectiveness, efficiency, appropriateness and value of healthcare services, including database development. 42 U.S.C. 299a(a)(1) and (8).

To achieve the goals of this project, registration information on SRs will be collected from SR producers who will populate the SRDR platform. In 2020, 1,029 users registered as Contributors.

The SRDR platform now uses a two-tiered categorization of users, and collection of registration data will depend on the type of user. “Contributors” are SR producers who use the SRDR platform as a tool to support production of the SR and share scientific data from their SRs. Registration data will be collected from these users. “General public” users only view scientific data publicly available in the SRDR platform. No data will be collected from these users. The “Commentator” category of users that were referenced in the last OMB clearance period has been eliminated in the updated system since no users have signed up to be commentators.

All Contributors undergo a simple self-registration process by providing a password and an email address. Provision of username and institution information by registrants is now optional in the updated system. Collection of registration data from Contributors is required due to the technical nature of using the SRDR platform both as a database and a tool for assisting in the production of a SR, including providing comments in the various sections of a particular project on the SRDR platform. In addition, provision of an email address and institution information allows the administrators of the SRDR platform to confirm that requests are being made by actual people and not potentially malicious software code such as bots and other cybersecurity threats.

User registration will be used for administrative purposes only including communication between SRDR platform administrators and registrant users. This type of information will not be made publicly available.

SRDR+ https://srdrplus.ahrq.gov/
Draft data collection instruments and technical documentation have been requested from AHRQ by AEA.
2019 submission to OMB: https://www.reginfo.gov/public/do/PRAViewICR?ref_nbr=201909-0935-001
FRN: https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2022-17369

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