Qualitative Research Article Critique.

Essay by longrn November 2005

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Qualitative research is "the investigation of phenomena, typically in an in-depth and holistic fashion, through the collection of rich narrative materials using a flexible research design" (Polit, Beck, and Hungler, 2001, p 469). Qualitative researchers focus on the descriptions and deeper meaning associated with the data collected. Another way to define qualitative research is to describe it as a type of research that involves interpreting non-numerical data. The next few pages will discuss the qualitative study report, "Having an Abortion Using Mifepristone and Home Misoprostol: A Qualitative Analysis of Women's Experiences.

The Problem.

In health care, it is important that the research data used to support clinical practices is legitimate. "Women faced with an unwanted pregnancy have to make the decision whether to terminate the pregnancy or carry to pregnancy to term. Women base their decision to have an abortion on their current life setting, even though having an abortion may conflict with their moral or religious beliefs"(Fielding, Edmunds, & Schaff, 2002).

Regardless of their values and beliefs the decision is often difficult: many experience guilt, anger, anxiety, and fear (Fielding, et al, 2002).

The option of aborting the fetus by using medication instead of surgery is currently undergoing testing for efficacy and the effects on the emotional and physical well-being of the women involved. According to Fielding, et al (2002), women choose medical over surgical abortion because it is more natural, more private and less painful. The researchers wanted to understand whether women's perceptions change during the medical abortion process versus the surgical process.

Importance to Nursing.

Nurses are the first in line to advocate for patients and their rights to receive quality health care services and to have adequate education in order to make appropriate decisions regarding personal health care choices. Learning whether women are concerned about a...