Advanced Practice Nurses Implementation of Evidence-Based Practice: A Mixed Methods Approach

Monday, 7 July 2008: 10:50 AM
Andrea Renwanz Boyle, DNSc, RN, BC , School of Nursing, San Francisco State University, San Francisco, CA

Learning Objective 1: identify types of evidence used by advanced practice nurses.

Learning Objective 2: describe strategies, benefits, and challenges experienced by advanced practice nurses in the implementation of evidence-based practice

Introduction: Agreement exists among many nursing professionals world-wide that excellent practice is evidence-based. Data from prior study (2004-2007) by this researcher revealed: (1) both clinicians and students perceived evidence-based practice as the integration of research into nursing practice; and (2) learning about evidence-based practice occurs primarily in formal academic settings. Prior research has been focused on understanding how clinicians and students perceive and define the concept of evidence-based practice. Less is known about how APNs implement evidence into clinical practice, and what benefits and challenges APNs identify as research is implemented into their clinical work.

Purpose: The purpose of this project is to add to the evidence-based practice body of knowledge by studying APN's abilities to implement research into clinical practice. The research question for this project is: “What are APN's perceptions of evidence-based practice implementation?”

Methodology: Data for this mixed methods, descriptive study is obtained by a convenience sample. APNs currently employed in the San Francisco Bay Area will be surveyed from January, 2008 through May, 2008. A 4 item evidence-based practice survey questionnaire and demographic questionnaire will be used for data collection. Content analysis will be used to analyze the evidence-based practice survey qualitative data; descriptive statistics will be used to quantitatively analyze demographic data.

Results: Data collection for this study will be completed by May, 2008 and results will be available in early June, 2008.

Summary and Implications: Evidence-based practice is an essential component of advanced nursing practice. Data are available about evidence-based practice definitions and perceptions; little information is available about APN perceptions of evidence-based practice implementation. Information obtained from a mixed methods approach to this problem has the potential to enhance understanding of how APN's incorporate evidence into their important clinical work.