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Do have any advice to help nurse managers engage staff in evidence-based practice?


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Creating a culture where evidence-based (EB) practice can flourish requires resources such as subscriptions to electronic journals and databases, access to computers and the Internet, and release time for staff nurses to work on projects and to serve on EB councils. There is no such thing as research on a shoestring budget, and although the hard work of dedicated professionals can bring high quality results, it does take time and resources.

Some first steps to developing an EB culture can be assessing the accessibility of electronic resources and computers and developing a plan so that those resources are available to staff nurses.

Consider providing nurses with education about the importance of EB practice and how it fits into their daily work. This education includes helping nurses learn how to search the literature, access resources, and critique published articles, develop and implement a research protocol, and disseminate the results of a research or EB project.

Also encourage nurses to attend seminars or conferences that include research reports to help them learn more about research. Some organizations also offer continuing education programs on EB practice or collaborate with a local school of nursing to offer an on-site research course for academic credit. Remember that the specific educational offerings must fit the culture of the organization and needs and readiness of the staff member. There is limited use in trying to get nurses involved in research or EB practice if they are working mandatory overtime or if limited resources or support exist for professional development or practice.

—Suzanne C. Beyea, RN, PhD, FAAN