The Significance of Applying Evidence‐Based Practice to Nursing Care and Explain How the Academic Preparation of the RN‐Bsn Nurse Supports Its Application
The impact of evidence-based practice (EBP) has echoed across nursing practice, education, and science. The call for evidence-based quality improvement and healthcare transformation underscores the need for redesigning care that is effective, safe, and efficient. In line with multiple direction-setting recommendations from national experts, nurses have responded to launch initiatives that maximize the valuable contributions that nurses have made, can make, and will make, to fully deliver on the promise of EBP. Such initiatives include practice adoption.
Florence Nightingale was credited with improving patient care in the 1800s when she noted that unsanitary conditions and restricted ventilation could adversely affect the health of patients. She went on to record medical statistics using patient demographics to ascertain the number of deaths in hospitals and the mortality rate connected to different illnesses and injuries. Archie Cochrane introduced the concept of applying randomized controlled trials (RTC) and other types of research to the nursing practice in 1972. Before Cochrane's contribution to healthcare, medical care centered on unfounded assumptions without consideration for the individual patient. Cochrane proposed that healthcare systems have limited resources so they should only use treatments that are proven to be effective. He believed that RTCs were the most verified form of evidence and his assertion created the foundation for the EBP movement. In 1996 David Sackett introduced the term evidence-based medicine along with a definition that is still widely used today. Unlike Cochrane, Sackett felt that EBP should not only focus on research but should merge evidence, clinical experience and patient values. As other healthcare professions began adopting Sackett's concept for patient care, it was renamed evidenced-based practice. EBP is an essential component of safe, quality patient care. Nurses must be aware of current practices in order to provide care to patients with complicated and debilitating conditions. Nursing students in an RN to BSN program learn the role of research in the nursing practice. These programs cover the design, methodologies, process and ethical principles of research. In addition, nursing students use critical thinking skills to evaluate and critique research studies in order to apply the findings to their nursing practice.
Kajermo in 1999, made investigation on nurses’ perceived barriers to carry out research and utilize the ideas. She found out that several factors contributed to failure of nurses to incorporate new ideas into the system (Kajermo & Nordstrom, 1999). The factors include inadequate accessibility to facilities, isolation from colleagues who have the knowledge and inability to understand the English language. A summary of the Kajermo’s barriers include research communication for instance, unavailability of reports, inadequate literature and unclear recommendations for the practices in the nursing fraternity. The research also identifies organizational disorders that relate to inadequate time for reading of researches, inadequate resources, implementation problems and poor leadership in health organizations together with low attitude from nurses themselves. Retsas made surveys in Australian nurses and found out that perception of nurses interfere with their capability to make and use their research in clinical activities. According to Retsas, there are several reasons why nurses do not implement research activities. They include little time during job hours for implementing new ideas, inadequate facilities, inability to understand the research, less facilities and poor leadership among the authority. Additionally, physicians fail to cooperate with nurses while isolation of knowledgeable nurses takes the order of the day. In Retsas’ view, the nurses cannot access research materials, which imply that they are less, and cannot certify the requirements of all the nurses across the nation. An overview of the problems can be summarized into organizational problems, research communication and poor attitude from nurses towards the research activities (Retsas & Nolan, 1999).
Obviously, one of the key points we learn in nursing school is about the importance of evidence-based practice. As students we are taught to be a generation that provides high-quality care. This high-quality care is supported by evidence, which took many years to become standards of care through translation from research to clinical practice. Nursing EBP continues to expand and several resources such as journals, models and books are available to help nurses understand the concepts and process. Gaining knowledge of EBP and learning strategies for implementation are critical skills for nurses, no matter the setting.
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