Evidence-Based Practice and Barriers to Its Implementation

Evidence-based practice (EBP) comprises five major steps: identifying practice needs and formulating a relevant question, searching for the best available evidence, critically evaluating the collected data, integrating the findings into one’s knowledge and clinical environment, and evaluating the application outcomes. The EBP process is comprehensive and requires a lot of time, knowledge, and effort. For this reason, many practitioners may not be able to carry it out independently.

At the same time, the importance of EBP is highlighted by many researchers and health providers as it is characterized by various beneficial effects on clinical performance and patient outcomes. Therefore, it is important to understand what barriers to the application of EBP exist and what strategies could be used to remove them.

From the educational perspective, practitioners should receive at least a basic familiarization regarding research methodology and practices. It may help them to evaluate evidence more efficiently and be more confident about the fundamental processes of EBP. Moreover, it is possible to say that it is almost impossible to bring EBP at an advanced level in a setting without substantial administrative support.

Fearing, Barwick, and Kimber (2014) state that administrators should consolidate desirable behavior in healthcare providers by enforcing standards of practice, providing professional training, and raising awareness of the importance and value of EBP. At the same time, a favorable practice environment should be provided.


Fearing, G., Barwick, M., & Kimber, M. (2014). Clinical transformation: Manager’s perspectives on implementation of evidence-based practice. Administration and Policy in Mental Health and Mental Health Services Research, 41(4), 455-68. Web.