The nursing profession has evolved not only in the ways that nurses offer care to their patients but also in how these professionals are educated. With the drive for a better quality of healthcare services and nursing outcomes, evidence-based practice (EBP) has emerged as one of the most crucial aspects of nursing. EBP attempts to cover the gaps that exist in patient care for better patient and nursing outcomes. Similarly, there has been a growing push for nursing research that is instrumental in growing nursing not only as a profession but also as a discipline. In its entirety, therefore, the evidence-based practice aims at standardizing and improving the access as well as the quality of healthcare services across all groups of patients. Therefore, incorporating evidence-based research into various areas of nursing, such as interprofessional collaboration, is essential since it promotes quality and patient-centered care.
Overview of Selected Evidenced-based Practice Project
In nursing, there is a close connection between EBP and research. The such connection stems from the fact that the researchers develop EBP knowledge through numerous studies (Cannon & Boswell, 2015). Therefore, the relation between the two is that even though EBP extends beyond research, the foundation of the process is based on information derived from research.
Despite this close connection, the two differ significantly. While research aims at generating or validating the correctness of existing information through rigorous scientific methods, EBP focuses on translating the evidence and applying it in the clinical decision-making process (Cannon & Boswell, 2015). It tries to use the best available evidence in making informed decisions about patient care.
The emphasis on EBP stems from the fact that it has significantly contributed to professional nursing. EBP achieves this by allowing the professionals to apply the best available evidence in offering superior care to patients. Moreover, incorporating EBP into nursing education and clinical experience helps the professionals develop advanced critical thinking skills essential in clinical decision-making process (Cannon & Boswell, 2015). Notably, the application of best evidence in bridging the gap that exists in patient care has led to the growth of nursing as a profession since the practitioners incorporate new evidence into managing various health conditions.
EBP is essential in various nursing roles, including advanced family nurse practice. The application of evidence-based practice offers change in this practice area by promoting the use of the best available evidence in managing patient conditions in both clinical and non-clinical settings (Cannon & Boswell, 2015). The use of such information has the potential of transforming the practice by culminating in better techniques that lead to higher quality of care in patients in both clinical and non-clinical settings.
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Identification of the Nursing Concern to Be Improved
Interprofessional collaboration in healthcare teams is essential in providing effective and efficient care to patients. The purpose of working together in professionally diverse high performing teams is to provide quality and adequate care to patients (Brassard, 2011). Nevertheless, even though there are numerous benefits of working together as the teams, there are also numerous challenges that arise in the process as a result of the diverse knowledge bases and training of the professionals (Alvarado & Liebig, 2016). Therefore, there is a need for nursing practitioners and other care providers to acquire the skills and attitudes necessary to work together.
Interdisciplinary collaboration is integral in primary healthcare. It is also essential in family nurse practice, particularly with the aging global population and the epidemiological transition from acute to chronic conditions that lessen hospital stays and necessitate care at home and other non-clinical settings (Johnson, 2013). The issue of professional collaboration in AFNP is common since the professionals do not work in isolation. Even those that work in hospital settings have to perform their duties in close collaboration with other professionals since they tend to work in acute units as a result of their specialization in primary care. However, this collaboration can also have a negative connotation (Brassard, 2011). Some of the requirements like those mandating physicians to supervise advanced nurse practitioners as well as other healthcare providers are not only restrictive but also negatively affect patient centeredness.
Interprofessional collaboration influences various categories of people. One of these is the practitioners who work as part of the team. Such people can facilitate or impede the success of the collaboration. The latter also affects the patients. The reason for this is that it influences the quality of care delivered offered to patients. The professionals who work as part of teams tend to have better patient outcomes compared to those who do not. The stakeholders affected by this issue, therefore, are the care providers and the patients.
Patients, particularly those suffering from chronic conditions, and their primary family caregivers require the collaboration of other healthcare providers. The absence of effective interprofessional collaboration risks the well-being of the patients (Supper et al., 2015). Ineffective communication in the collaboration, for example, increases the probability of medical errors, which compromises the safety of the patients. The lack of efficient interprofessional collaboration, therefore, affects the capacity of the providers to offer quality healthcare to patients, which negatively affects patient outcomes.
The proposed solution to this problem is the implementation of measures that would promote meaningful collaboration between family nurse practitioners and other healthcare providers. High performing teams share various characteristics, including effective communication, recognition of member contribution, shared decision making, vision, as well as values (Supper, et al 2015). However, the attainment of these values requires trust and flexibility among the team members as well as the ability of the members to assume responsibility for their actions. Therefore, there is a need to enforce measures and training to promote interprofessional collaboration not only for the family nurse practitioners but also for other care providers working in close collaboration with the AFNPs. Having problem statements for research is essential. It explains the relationship between interprofessional collaboration and patient outcomes for patients with chronic conditions, particularly those under the care of primary caregivers.
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PICOT/PICo Question and Literature Search Process
EBP research utilizes PICOT/PICo questions. The identified PICOT question for this EBP research is, for patients with chronic conditions, do advanced family nurse practitioners who engage in interdisciplinary collaboration compared to those who work in isolation lead to better patient outcomes in the first six months of care? Even though there is much research into interprofessional collaboration, gaps exist in literature, particularly when it comes to collaboration for family nurse practitioners. The AFNPs do not work in isolation and require the collaboration of other providers for them to offer adequate care to their patients. The research is essential for AFNP, as it contributes to closing the gaps that now exist in this field. At the same time, it helps the practitioners overcome the unique challenges that characterize the collaboration between primary care providers and other healthcare professionals.
A literature review is a vital part of EBP tasks. It would help in placing the identified relevant articles into perspective, understanding of how the literature contributes to the research topic, as well as identifying any gaps that exist in the literature while at the same time giving credit to the authors for their work. Additionally, it may prevent duplication of research by avoiding those areas that have already been covered.
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Conducting EBP research involves the application of various steps. In this case, the databases used include PubMed and Science Direct. The search criteria involved the use of keywords interprofessional collaboration, interprofessional collaboration in advanced nurse practitioners multidisciplinary, collaboration in primary care, multidisciplinary collaboration, and family nurse practice. Additional terms include the importance of interprofessional collaboration and role of interprofessional collaboration in primary care. The Institute of Medicine is one of the organizations relevant to this research (Brassard, 2011). The reason for this is that it advocates the removal of barriers to allow nurses to practice to the full extent.
EBP research often has its grounds on theoretical frameworks. In this case, the recognized model is King’s model of goal attainment. The framework contains three different aspects, namely the personal, social, and interpersonal interacting aspects (Fewster-Thuente, 2011). Each of them has its unique defining concepts. The interpersonal aspect involves human beings interacting with one another in different environments, while the personal aspects comprise the individuals interacting with their environments and include the growth. On the other hand, social aspects involve aspects, such as power, decision-making, and authority. The framework, therefore, concentrates on the interactions that are the foundation of interprofessional collaboration.
The theoretical frameworks utilize concepts that are essential in interdisciplinary collaboration, namely communication, perceptions, and interactions. All of them define the communication and interaction process between the providers in interdisciplinary teams (Fewster-Thuente, 2011). The model is essential in analyzing the collaboration between professionals based on the attainment of set goals in healthcare delivery.
All in all, there is a close connection between EBP and research, as EBP has its foundation in research outcomes. However, the two differ, as EBP seeks to translate the best evidence into practice, while research aims at generating new or validating existing information. EBP has contributed to the growth of nursing as a profession. Similarly, interdisciplinary collaboration is essential to positive patient outcomes, and as such, it is an important topic for EBP research. The EBP research utilizes a PICOT research question and quantitative research methods. It derives from databases, such as PubMed and Science Direct, and uses King’s theory of goal setting as the theoretical framework.