Professional Development: Critiquing Research
The ability to critique (critically analyse and evaluate) research from both the
qualitative and quantitative paradigms is an essential skill for occupational
therapists. It is this skill, integrated with expertise gained from clinical practice
that underpins evidence based practice (EBP). Although there are many
definitions of EBP, Muir Gray (1997) defines it as “an approach to decision
making in which the clinician uses the best evidence available, in consultation
with the patient, to decide upon the option which suits the patient best." The
purpose of this assignment is to enable the development of skills in ...view middle of the document...
Critical Appraisal Framework. Hek, G., Moule, P. (2006).
Purpose of the study
Is the knowledge sought readily available?
Research into osteoporosis is readily available from many sources including peer reviewed journals, the Cochrane database and books, but there is little available that only addresses the psychological experience of people receiving a positive diagnosis of osteoporosis. Research is available that addresses the psychological experience of people receiving a positive diagnosis of other long term conditions e.g. diabetes.
Is there an important reason for the research to be undertaken?
Psychological harm (increased levels of anxiety) have been reported in patients who have received a positive diagnosis of diabetes or other long term condition. The authors assert that the advantages of being screened for osteoporosis should outweigh any potential psychological harm caused by receiving a positive diagnosis. If the authors found that a positive diagnosis cause psychological harm (increase anxiety levels, reduced quality of life) then this could have implications for the development of future health policy in relation to population screening programmes.
It considers service users views, opinions of and potential impact of positive diagnosis.
Are the potential outcomes of the study realistic?
Yes, as the authors attempted to discover what a positive diagnosis of osteoporosis meant to individual women. They also investigated the women’s understanding of the condition and the ways in which they made sense of a positive diagnosis, it’s impact on their quality of life and any pre-existing health beliefs about osteoporosis.
Especially promotion of optimal management of the disease.
Was the researcher(s) appropriately qualified/supported to undertake the research?
Researchers are either clinical psychologists or medical practitioners.
Currently working in either higher education or clinical practice.
Are there any concerns about any funders of the research in relation to the process of the research described?
This research was undertaken as additional work in a larger study known as COSHIBA (The Cohort for Skeletal Health in Bristol and Avon Study) . Study funded by a Clinical Scientist Fellowship from Arthritis UK (registered UK charity.)
Research problem and research questions
Is the problem significant and researchable and have all potential ways of solving the problem been considered?
Although the problem initially appears to have little significance for clinical practice and appears not to be an obvious area for research. When the authors put it into context (impact on healthcare delivery, compliance with prescribed treatments and therapies, healthcare costs, impact of diagnosis on quality of life,...