Research Directions for Specialist Practice

Heartfield (2000) full text summary PDF

For which topic were research priorities identified?

emergency nursing

In which location was the research priority setting conducted?

Australia - Australia

Why was it conducted at all?

Emergency nursing requires fundamental skills common to many areas of nursing practice, such as a high level of assessment and communication skills. However it is the diversity of the patient population and the unpredictability and immediacy of clients' physical and psychosocial needs that makes emergency nursing an area of specialist practice. Much of health care practice is under-researched, and emergency nursing is no exception. Research studies that explore emergency nursing as therapeutic activity in its own right are scarce. Research practices need to be relevant to practice and as the nature of nursing practices changes, so too must the research focus. Research directions identified directly from nursing practice are perceived to have greater professional and social relevance, and to encourage programs of focused research more than those originating elsewhere (Cronin & Owsley 1993). With research evidence generally accepted as an essential basis for contemporary health care delivery, emergency nursing is challenged to identify and develop its research focus. Practitioners are well situated to identify clinical practice concerns, and to evaluate and test research findings (Misener et al. 1994). Accordingly, this study was designed to include the views of a large number of nurses working in the emergency departments of the selected metropolitan hospitals in a medium sized city in Australia.

What was the objective?

to identify the research directions necessary to advance emergency nursing as a specialist area of practice

What was the outcome?

a ranking list of 10 research topics

How long did the research prioritization take?

No information provided.

Which methods were used to identify research priorities?

Delphi; interview

How were the priorities for research identified exactly?

Step 1: interviews with nurses to collect research gaps. Step 2: data processing: thematic analysis of interviews. Step 3: Delphi round 1: participants were asked to list their current research activities and to nominate other questions, issues or topics that needed to be studied, and asking participants to rate each of the eleven topics derived from interviews. Step 4: list of topics revised: list of 44 topics generated. Step 5: Delphi round 2: participants were asked to rate each of the 44 topics. Step 6: Delphi round 3: list of 40 topics with group mean ratings, participants were asked to re-rate

Which stakeholders took part?

Nurses working in nine Australian hospital emergency departments. Interview: nurses at emergency departments. Delphi round 1: 105 participants.

How were stakeholders recruited?

The nine major emergency departments within the metropolitan area of a medium Australian city were chosen as a purposeful attempt to capture the richness of a wide range of perspectives. Senior nurses were identified through telephone approaches made to the senior clinical nurse in the nine metropolitan emergency departments to seek expressions of interest in participation.

Were stakeholders actively involved or did they just participate?

Stakeholders were mere participants of the research prioritization process; they were not actively involved in the process.