Sample-Research Critique


Research Critique


The purpose of this research critique is to show how a quantitative study is effectively critiqued. The critiqued study follows the increased use of catheter in health care organizations and the resulting infections. In US for instance, CAUTIs account for around 34% of all health care associated infections. These infections are associated with high health care costs and excess morbidity. Even though there are CAUTI prevention practices in place, adherence to them has not been successful. This essay will explain the protection of human participants, data collection, data management and analysis, findings or interpretation of findings including implications for practice and future research, and conclusion.

Protection of Human Participants

As noted by Emanuel (2008), research studies that involve human participants are required to adhere to some norms to make them ethical and legal. The major expected aspects are obtaining consent, having voluntary participation, and institutional review board approval before the sample is selected. In this case, the researchers adhered to this and had several benefits. To start with, by obtaining informed consent, it was ensured that the participants knew what they were engaging into. The study participants did not agree to a study they did not understand; they understood the process and the part they were to play. This way, the researchers had willing participants. Further, by ensuring anonymity of the participants with the research being conducted on nurses, the researchers were able to get more detailed and honest responses. The participants also enjoyed voluntary participation and this encouraged their responding. Lastly, the Colorado Multiple Institutional Review Board gave approval to the researchers by exempting the study from human subjects’ research oversight (Fink et al, 2012).      

Data Collection

The dependent and independent variables in the study are very clear. The researchers wanted to determine the care practices in place for CAUTI prevention. As a result, the dependent variable was the CAUTI prevention. The independent variables were the care practices in three areas namely equipment and alternatives and insertion and maintenance techniques; personnel, policies, training, and education; and documentation, surveillance, and removal reminders. Data was collected through electronic surveying of NICHE hospital nurse coordinators on issues regarding IUC practices. Data was collected in December 2009 with 20 NICHE member hospital coordinators invited to complete the survey with 233 more invited to complete the survey in June 2010. The respondents had to gather the information required in completing the surveys from various sources including nurses from the units focusing on NICHE activities, purchasing staff, infection preventionists, local educators, and clinical informatics staff. The researchers used the Survey Monkey methodology to collect data. This was agreed to because it was considered the most appropriate in the current study and had been used in previous studies satisfactorily. The data was collected from December 2009 to June 2010. The respondents started by filling the survey forms after gathering adequate and relevant data from the identified personnel. The survey was completed in ten minutes. The coordinators were also to send copies of their hospital’s IUC placement, management, and CAUTI prevention procedure and policy (Fink et al, 2012).    

Data Management and Analysis

After the data was collected, it was managed and analyzed using SPSS version 19. The demographic data and survey items were summarized using tests of difference and association with a set at 0.05 and descriptive statistics. The authors in this case describe maintaining a paper trail of critical decisions that were made during the analysis of the data (Abbott, 2014). Further, they used statistical software to ensure accuracy of the analysis. The researchers had also measures in place to prevent research bias. They analyzed the data independently and later compared their analysis. They also had the help of experts in data analysis. 

Findings / Interpretation of Findings: Implications for Practice and Future Research

From the analyzed data, it was found out that even though there are CAUTI prevention practices in place in the NICHE hospitals examined with most of the practices aligning with evidence-based guidelines, there is considerable heterogeneity of practices and this called for improvement and standardization. Even though silver-coated catheter house-wide is noted to have equivocal evidence support, it is used by fewer hospitals because of the excess costs involved. Other used prevention practices are use of removal triggers such as reminders and stop orders and nursing-driven catheter removal protocols. Even though these practices had beneficial results, they were not used by all hospitals. Since the current findings agreed with earlier studies, it can be argued that they are valid and accurate. The implication of the study was therefore to have implemented local procedures and policies that incorporate evidence-based guidelines. The designed and implemented procedures and policies should achieve regulatory compliance and also standardize practice for providers. One of the major limitations of the study was that it focused on the nursing practice with physician practice out of the study’s scope. Future research should thus not overlook physician training and education since they are also involved in catheter placement. Further, the study used NICHE hospitals, which are not for profit hospitals and thus are not a representative of the general hospital population. The study also relied on self-reports from NICHE hospital coordinators who might have lacked perfect knowledge on CAUTI prevention (Fink et al, 2012).   


Even with increased catheter infections, there are prevention measures that can reduce the frequency is well adhered to. The preventive mechanisms should be standardized and aligned to the hospitals policy and procedures so that all physicians are encouraged to adhere to them. This study shows how CAUTI can be prevented if corrective measures are taken. There should be policies in place and the medical practitioners should be educated and trained on the same.




Abbott, H. (2014). Foundations for operating department practice: Essential theory for practice. London: Open University Press.

Emanuel, E. J. (2008). The Oxford textbook of clinical research ethics. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Fink, R., Gilmartin, H., Richard, A., Capezuti, E., Boltz, M., & Wald, H. (2012). Indwelling urinary catheter management and catheter-associated urinary tract infection prevention practices in Nurses Improving Care for Health system Elders hospitals. American Journal of Infection Control, 1-6. Retrieved from

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