At Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, our goals and objectives include creating innovation through research. Our Nursing Strategic Plan supports these goals by providing guidance for the structure and process of nursing research and evidence-based practice.
Nursing research at Penn State Health is greatly enhanced by our association with the Penn State College of Medicine, which gives us access to resources that support and advance nursing research. Together we develop the capabilities of nurses to use and generate new knowledge, and to integrate research findings and best available evidence into the clinical and administrative practice of nursing.
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Evidence-based practice (EBP) nursing is using and carrying out care interventions and practices based on the best available information. Evidence-based practice is a triad that integrates the nurse’s clinical expertise with the best external research evidence, and takes into account patient preferences in order to deliver quality nursing care.
In EBP, clinical expertise and expert opinion are sources of knowledge and are ways that nurses practice; but in today’s health care arena this traditional, authoritative decision making is not sufficient.
Evidence-based practice is a way for nurses to examine traditional nursing practices, analyze alternative and contradictory data, and make sound nursing care decisions supported by the best available research evidence. This competent practice of nursing based on verified standards is required also by accrediting bodies and professional organizations. Third-party payers too are increasingly looking at paying for only health care interventions that have known effectiveness supported by scientific evidence. Even patients and families are using the Internet to seek information about the best treatments that have been tested in clinical trials.
Explore nursing research at the Penn State ScholarSphere Research Repository.
Mary Lou Kanaskie, PhD, RN-BC, AOCN, is Research Nurse Scientist for Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center.