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Getting Bandolier in 2001

Where we are now
The new arrangements
Intranet possibilities

A reader recently described Bandolier as an 'almost unique source of completely unbiased information'. It is independent of the politics of health policy on one side and commercial interests on the other. Bandolier aims to provide evidence of the research findings in healthcare in a simple, understandable way. Surveys in Wessex [1] and Northern & Yorkshire [2] underline Bandolier 's place in delivering evidence-based information to professionals.

Bandolier maintains its relevance through frequent lectures and discussions about current issues in health care. The feedback we receive is that Bandolier is an essential resource and much valued.

Where we are now


The present distribution arrangements grew like Topsy, and are expensive. Distributing Bandolier costs as much or more than getting the words on paper. A new system of distribution for PCG/Ts, HAs, Trusts and other healthcare organisations will start from January 2001. It might help tackle the unequal 'postcode distribution' (Figure) that has resulted from our Topsy development.


The new arrangements


Bandolier will continue to have central support from NHS R&D, but budgets cannot support the continually expanding circulation. For PCGs, PCTs, Trusts and Health Authorities it is possible to deliver a box of 100 copies of Bandolier each month for a year for a single payment of £600 (50p per copy). This will reduce the individual cost of an annual subscription from £36 on an individual basis to £5. It will allow each health professional and manager to have his or her own copy, and maximise the knowledge base of the organisation. The costs for different numbers of subscriptions is shown in the Table for the UK (for overseas subscribers the cost will be higher, and will have to reflect shipping charges).


A letter and order form is being posted to all PCGs, PCTs, Health Authorities and Trusts (Chief Executives, PCG leads or Medical Directors) in the UK. Readers in the NHS are likely to belong to one of these organisations, and we would ask those readers to ensure that their organisation is aware that they want to continue receiving Bandolier . There will be some organisations and individuals we miss. A pdf of the form is available from the Bandolier Internet site, or from Maura Moore (01865 226132, fax 01865 226978).

Intranet possibilities


We also want to explore the possibility of making an electronic form of Bandolier available for use on Intranets in the future. This would involve downloading the Bandolier website (including pdf versions of the bulletins) on a monthly or quarterly basis. To cover the work involved we would need to make an annual charge of between £500-1000 for a site licence.

References:

  1. A McColl, H Smith, P White, J Field. General practitioners' perceptions of the route to evidence based medicine: a questionnaire survey. BMJ 1998 316:361-5.
  2. Anon. Access to the evidence base from general practice in Northern and Yorkshire Region. Centre for Reviews and Dissemination. 2000.


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