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Table 1 Grading criteria for review of carer intervention studies

From: A systematic review of psychosocial interventions for family carers of palliative care patients

Grade I (Strong evidence)
   RCTs or review of RCTS
IA Calculation of sample size and accurate standard definition of appropriate outcome variables
IB Accurate and standard definition of appropriate outcome variables
IC Neither of the above
Grade II (Fairly strong evidence)
Prospective study with a comparison group (non-randomised controlled trial, good observational study or retrospective study that controls effectively for confounding variables).
IIA Calculation of sample size and accurate, standard definition of appropriate outcome variables and adjustment for the effects of important confounding variables
IIB One or more of the above
Grade III (Weaker evidence)
   Retrospective or observational studies
IIIA Comparison group, calculation of sample size, accurate and standard definition of appropriate outcome variables
IIIB Two or more of the above
IIIC None of these
Grade IV (Weak evidence)
   Cross-sectional study, Delphi exercise, consensus of experts