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Appears in Collections:Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: Why, when and how to update a meta-ethnography qualitative synthesis
Authors: France, Emma
Wells, Mary
Lang, Heidi
Williams, Brian
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Keywords: Cancer
Qualitative analysis
Systematic reviews
Qualitative reviews
Issue Date: 15-Mar-2016
Publisher: BioMed Central
Citation: France E, Wells M, Lang H & Williams B (2016) Why, when and how to update a meta-ethnography qualitative synthesis, Systematic Reviews, 5, Art. No.: 44.
Abstract: Background  Meta-ethnography is a unique, systematic, qualitative synthesis approach widely used to provide robust evidence on patient and clinician beliefs and experiences and understandings of complex social phenomena. It can make important theoretical and conceptual contributions to health care policy and practice.  Results  Since beliefs, experiences, health care contexts and social phenomena change over time, the continued relevance of the findings from meta-ethnographies cannot be assumed. However, there is little guidance on whether, when and how meta-ethnographies should be updated; Cochrane guidance on updating reviews of intervention effectiveness is unlikely to be fully appropriate. This is the first in-depth discussion on updating a meta-ethnography; it explores why, when and how to update a meta-ethnography. Three main methods of updating the analysis and synthesis are examined. Advantages and disadvantages of each method are outlined, relating to the context, purpose, process and output of the update and the nature of the new data available. Recommendations are made for the appropriate use of each method, and a worked example of updating a meta-ethnography is provided.  Conclusions  This article makes a unique contribution to this evolving area of meta-ethnography methodology.
Type: Journal Article
DOI Link:
Rights: © France et al. 2016 This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://​creativecommons.​org/​licenses/​by/​4.​0/​), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver (http://​creativecommons.​org/​publicdomain/​zero/​1.​0/​) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.
Affiliation: NMAHP Research
NMAHP Research
University of Dundee
NMAHP Research

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