Academic journal article Nursing and Health Care Perspectives

Global Research Dissemination and Utilization

Academic journal article Nursing and Health Care Perspectives

Global Research Dissemination and Utilization

Article excerpt

ABSTRACT Research conducted by nurses, disseminated to broad populations of health care providers, and then used by nurses who provide direct care to patients, represents the ideal triad of research-based clinical practice. The current state of practice is far from this ideal. It is important to disseminate research within one's own country. In addition, changes in the ability to access information instantly through the use of the Internet call attention to the importance of global research dissemination and utilization efforts. Integration of research across country boundaries is imperative if nursing is to continue to advance as a profession. This article presents seven recommendations for global research dissemination and utilization.

Recommendations for Nurses and Nurse Educators

A FORTUNE COOKIE READS: "Knowing and not doing are equal to not knowing at all," meaning knowledge without action is useless. In the world of nursing, knowledge gained through research should inevitably manifest itself in some clinical application. Evidence-based practice is increasing nurses' knowledge regarding pathology and responses to health and illness, while technological innovations have increased our capacity to investigate, communicate, and implement findings.

* It is a paradox of our time and nation that both health care access disparity and our ability to reduce it are increasing. Developed countries, enabled by advances in educational, economic, and techological resources, must take the initiative to reduce this disparity. Research conducted by nurses, disseminated to broad populations of health care providers, and then used by nurses who provide direct care to patients, represents the ideal triad of research-based clinical practice. HOWEVER, the current state of practice is far from this ideal.

Much has been written regarding the techniques of research, its dissemination, and applications to practice. Likewise, a substantial amount of literature exists addressing issues of education and health from a nursing perspective. Now is an opportune time to weave these elements together within a global imperative to maximize the benefits of nursing knowledge in education and clinical practice, both to the profession and to the public. This article proposes recommendations for advances in research dissemination and utilization in the global arena.

Research dissemination may be defined as the diffusion of research findings into clinical practice so that they may be used by nurses and other health care providers who provide direct care to patients. Research utilization is the process of using research findings to guide clinical practice.

Barriers to the Use of Research in Clinical Practice There is evidence that, internationally, nurses are interested in participating in nursing research. Parahoo (1) notes that the majority of clinical nursing research is produced in North America, but increasing amounts are being done in the United Kingdom. The majority of nursing research focuses on understanding patient problems and clinical interventions to help patients cope with illness or disease and to promote health of all persons.

A growing body of literature also focuses on barriers to using nursing research. Despite the dramatic growth of nursing research, the use of research findings in clinical practice remains low. The term research practice gap has been applied to the discrepancy that exists between what researchers have learned is effective for clinical practice and what providers in direct patient care do with patients. Lack of awareness and delay in applying research to practice are identified as reasons for the research practice gap. The lack of utilization following dissemination of research findings has been widely reported (1-4).

A study by Kajermo (5) of 434 nurse educators, students, administrators, physicians, and clinicians attempted to determine why new nursing research findings were not implemented in practice. …

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