Reviewing and Critiquing Literature

Reading and critiquing literature are essential skills pertinent to an advanced practice nurse.  According to Melnyk and Fineout-Overholt (2015), a systematic search in the form of research generates dependable knowledge, which provides a strong base for clinical practice. As an advanced nurse, some of the strategies I will use to review and critique literature pertinent in my new practice encompass the following. The first strategy as informed by Melnyk and Fineout-Overholt include scrutinizing evidence from a clinical epidemiological view. In this case, it is important to consider the validity and reliability of the evidence provided. The approach will help in managing similar health problems and address deficits that may be present in scientific evidence or clinical practice. The other strategy is rating the strength of the scientific evidence to evaluate its applicability to my practice. Grading the strength incorporates the following quality, quantity, and consistency of the study design. On quality, the study design must meet the internal validity, while quantity considers the number of studies evaluated for the clinical issue including the overall sample size, and causality assessment for interventions. Under consistency, the investigation must report similar findings with similar or different study designs. The other strategy is examining whether the results will help in caring for my patients in my new practice as an advanced practice nurse. This falls under applicability, which is a critical element in the appraisal of evidence.  The subjects in the study must be similar to the target patients for which the care is being delivered. Additionally, the benefits indicated in the study must surpass the risks of treatment. The treatment illustrated in the study must be feasible to be implemented in the care setting. 

ReferencesMelnyk, B. M., & Fineout-Overholt, E. (2015). Evidence-based practice in nursing & healthcare: A guide to best practice. Philadelphia: Wolters Kluwer.

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