Research is an essential part of healthcare development. There is a need to carry out research to develop new treatments, or to decide which is the best available treatment or care. Evidence-based practice-basing methods of patient care on scientific research rather than relying on tradition or habit-is not a new concept in nursing. Much of what nurses do is based on previous practice or tradition. Since the days of Florence Nightingale, nurses have applied and conducted research in their practices. Many of the interventions we use are theoretically sound, but have not been validated by research. Research can be helpful in validating our practice. By implementing interventions that have been shown to be effective, we can save time by using better interventions and achieve better outcomes for our patients.
Pain management, falls, skin care, bed rest versus mobility after surgery and patient self-care techniques have fallen under scrutiny in a number of hospitals, health care systems and nursing associations.
"Nursing research not only can add to our knowledge base but can make changes for our patients, their futures, and their environments. It also impacts health care costs" (Denton, 2003). During the past week several nurses were interviewed at Tift Regional Medical Center to find out their perspective regarding the use of research findings in clinical practices. Permission was obtained from the Surgical Services Director, Tonia Garrett, to interview willing staff about the use of research at the bedside.
A brief discussion about research began the interview followed by several open-ended questions. The questions used for the interview were: Do you think research findings are not used to guide professional practice in mainstream nursing? If not, what are some reasons you think this is true? How often do you read results of research and apply it your personal...