JUST SO YOU KNOW By Denise M. Jordan MA, RN
Nursing practice is evidence-based. That means there is science behind why nurses do what they do and teach what they teach. Science is behind the methods for taking temperatures and blood pressures. Science and research, or evidence, is behind nurses recommending the use of pacifiers for babies.
When nurses say “the evidence supports” they mean research has been done on a particular topic and the research findings indicates this or that. Today, nursing is doing a lot of the research. Nursing has its own body of knowledge which is research based to support nursing practice. The other important piece is the dissemination of the findings or sharing the knowledge.
These undergraduate IPFW nursing students searched the literature to find research that had been done on topics of interest to them. Then, they put together a poster which they shared with peers and faculty at IPFW’s biannual Pediatric Poster Presentation. The information was presented in language that was easily understood and a context that was easily applicable. They will use this information when interacting with families.
Shana Patel selected the topic of Screen Time and Children. Her literature search led to the development of a poster which disseminated the findings that too much time spent watching television and playing video games leads to a sedentary life style and contributes to childhood obesity. In other words, the evidence supports that kids need to spend more time playing – walking, running, jumping – and less time watching.
Tierany Brooks and Danika Brown searched the topic of Breastfeeding versus Formula Feeding. When asked why this topic was important, Brooks recited the findings associated with immunity, bonding, obesity, and dollars. In other words, the evidence supports that breast feeding is healthier, more cost effective, and breast fed babies have less incidences of childhood obesity.
Nursing practice is evidence-based. The evidence supports that the use of pacifiers reduces the incidences of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome). The evidence supports that putting infants and children in car seats saves lives. The evidence supports that too much screen time for children increases the risk of childhood obesity. The evidence supports that breast feeding is healthier and more cost effective in comparison to bottle feeding and babies that are breast fed have less incidence of obesity. Nursing practice is evidence-based. There is research behind why nurses do what they do and teach what they teach
Sigma Theta Tau International and Chi Eta Phi Sorority, Inc. are two professional organizations that support nursing research and encourage nursing scholarship.
Denise M. Jordan MA, RN is clinical assistant professor at IPFW.
This article originally appeared in our May 1, 2013 issue.