Uniting the Strengths of Academic and Clinical Nursing to Promote Evidence-Based Practice

Thursday, 10 July 2008: 8:50 AM
Patricia W. Stone, PhD, MPH, RN , Columbia University, New York, NY
Sarah Collins, BSN, RN , School of Nursing, Columbia University, New York, NY
Pamela B. De Cordova, MSN, RN, BC , School of Nursing, Columbia University, New York, NY

Learning Objective 1: understand how to develop partnerships to further teaching of EBP.

Learning Objective 2: describe a key component of this program.

Teaching Evidence Based Nursing

Evidence based practice (EBP) is a learned skill demanding knowledge of information retrieval, critical analysis of evidence as well as clinical experience that informs appropriate questions. Novice nursing students often lack clinical experience needed to ask important questions. Contrarily, expert nurses have skill in forming pertinent questions, but limited knowledge, confidence, and time to locate evidence and apply to practice. An innovative and successful program that brings the strengths of academic and clinical nursing in the teaching and application of EBP will be presented.

This two phase program was guided by a conceptual framework that identified: 1) learners, 2) interventions implemented to teach EBP, and 3) outcomes that indicate the effectiveness of the methodologies used. In phase one, the intervention included structured classroom-based curriculum for learners (students and clinicians) and teams were created. Each team included a staff nurse, nurse leader, and 2 to 3 nursing students. Every team developed an appropriate EBP question and evaluated current best evidence. In this phase, clinicians collaborated on the question and students were responsible for the literature review. In phase two, each team implemented and evaluated the change in practice. In this phase, the clinicians guided the students in the application of the evidence and together the evaluation was conducted.

Nine teams have successfully completed the program. Sustainable practice changes have ranged from the process of drawing blood cultures from central lines to management of women in the second stage of labor. Success of the overall approach includes positive evaluations and publications of the specific EBP projects by the teams. Key components of this success include the partnership of the university and hospital, external funding for the program, and a priori identification of roles/strengths of team members. We encourage other settings to replicate this successful EBP program.