Focus groupsare a qualitative research tool, firstly designed to explore effects of filmsand television programs to viewers as well as the effect of preventive healthmessages. The method is widely used to investigate patient experiences inrelation to their disease and theircontacts with health. The method has also been found to be helpful forthe exploration of the attitudes of care providers and their resistance to some. It helps to understand the patient and the caregiver and to explore newresearch areas which can then be further investigated by quantitative methods.
There are three main reasons why this method isadvantageous in the development of a guideline.
1/ in order to keep the guideline in line with the needsand the constraints of the clinicians and the patients.
2/ to increase the implementation of the guideline.
3/ to gather expert opinions and best practices. Thisis especially important when a topic is largely unexplored.
Until recently there was no guideline for thescreening, diagnosis and treatment of attention deficit / hyperactivitydisorder (ADHD) in patients with a substance use disorder (SUD). The aim was todevelop such a guideline, starting out from a systematic review and based onthe methodology of the Scottish Intercollegiate Guideline Network (SIGN). Dueto the lack of scientific evidence on some of the topics, the guideline is acombination of evidence based and practice based recommendations.