The project focuses on reducing the incidence of falls among elderly patients in hospitals. The two main dependent variables that will be considered in the research are the incidence of falls and patient outcomes. As both of these variables can be quantified, the project would benefit from utilizing a quantitative methodology. A quantitative research design is particularly relevant to nursing interventions, as it allows reviewing larger volumes of data and thus permits generalizing the results to other settings (McCusker & Gunaydin, 2015). The project will consist of an intervention aimed at reducing falls among elderly patients. No policy changes will be implemented during the project. The proposed study will use surveys and hospital records as the principal sources of information, as this would provide both objective and subjective data for analysis. While hospital records can indicate the incidence of falls and patient outcomes, surveys will focus on nurses’ perceptions of the intervention and its effectiveness. This would allow producing a comprehensive overview of the intervention.
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The project will take place in a hospital setting, and thus the target population for this study is elderly patients receiving in-patient treatment. The inclusion criteria are senior age (65 and older) and patients’ state of consciousness. Unconscious patients, receiving treatment in an intensive care unit, or physically unable to move from a lying position will be excluded from the sample. Choosing an appropriate sample size is critical to ensuring the success of the study (Hayat, 2013). The sample size of 200 patients would be sufficient for the research, as it will enable generalizing the results to other elderly patient populations. The study will also involve 30 nurses who will be completing surveys. The nurse leaders agreed to provide support for the project, which means that nurses will help in recruiting participants and provide information from hospital records about patient falls and outcomes.
Recruitment and Data Protection
The recruitment process will involve nurses distributing written consent forms to patients who meet the inclusion criteria. After all of the patients sign their written consent forms, they will be monitored for falls and treatment outcomes. Nurses completing the survey will also sign a written consent form. Patients will be protected by an adequate privacy and confidentiality strategy. It includes storing all the data required for this project on the researcher’s computer and avoiding collecting or storing the participant’s identifying information, such as their names, age, and address.
To analyze the data collected, it would be necessary to determine the percentage change in inpatient falls and the prevalence of positive and negative outcomes before and after the intervention. These calculations can be done using Excel or a similar office program. Thus, the project would not require any special statistical software or support from a statistician. The surveys will also be analyzed based on the percentage shares of different answers on a Likert scale. To depict the survey results correctly, it would be useful to produce pie charts; changes in the key-dependent variables (the incidence of falls and patient outcomes) can be presented in a table.
The proposed project involves significant changes to room layout and the nurses’ approach to patient safety, and thus it will require at least three months to complete. The timetable for the project will be as follows:
- Week 1: Submit the proposal and obtain final approval;
- Week 2: Review the methodology and make minor modifications if needed;
- Weeks 3-10: Conduct the intervention and collect the required data;
- Weeks 11-12: Analyze the data, prepare charts, and produce a write-up;
- Week 13: Review and submit the final version of the report.
Hayat, M. J. (2013). Understanding sample size determination in nursing research. Western Journal of Nursing Research, 35(7), 943-956.
McCusker, K., & Gunaydin, S. (2015). Research using qualitative, quantitative, or mixed methods and choice based on the research. Perfusion, 30(7), 537-542.
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