6 Questions Policymakers Can Ask When Presented with Evidence

Policymakers are often presented with evidence. This tool provides state leaders with questions to ask when thinking about evidence or when advocates present them with evidence.

Questions to ask yourself:

 1. Does this study really apply to the problem that I want to address?

2.  What is the quality of the evidence?  Based on this evidence, how confident should I be that the program will produce the benefit I’m looking for?

3.  Who produced the evidence?  Are there conflicts of interest that should make me doubt its reliability?

Questions to ask advocates: 

4.  What about other studies? Do they support your position or have different outcomes?

5.  What exactly was the intervention in the study that produced the results? Could anything besides the intervention have happened to influence the results (environmental effects, economy, etc.)?

6.  Who are other stakeholders on this issue (providers, patients, payers, government agencies) and are there other interpretations they would make of the data?