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Posts from the ‘Knowledge Synthesis’ Category

Mixed Research Synthesis of Stress in Mothers of Preterm Infants

The current featured ANS article is titled “Posttraumatic Stress in Mothers While Their Preterm Infants Are in the Newborn Intensive Care Unit: A Mixed Research Synthesis” by Cheryl Tatano Beck, DNSc, CNM, FAAN and Jennifer Woynar, BSN, RN.  The article is available to download at no cost while it is featured on the ANS site!  Here are messages from each of the authors about their work:

Cheryl Beck:

In my qualitative program of research on traumatic childbirth, mothers have repeatedly shared how traumatic giving birth

Cheryl Tatano Beck

prematurely was. Their posttraumatic stress did not stop after giving birth but continued as their fragile infants were now in the NICU fighting for their lives.  I wanted to get a handle on just how pervasive mothers’ posttraumatic stress is while their infants are in the NICU. I decided to synthesize all the published literature I could locate- qualitative studies, quantitative studies, and mixed methods studies. In order to integrate these qualitative and quantitative findings in a single systematic review, I chose to do a mixed research synthesis. In the past I have published metasyntheses and meta-analyses but never a mixed research synthesis.  I wanted to try my hand at this type of literature review. Another reason I had for conducting this mixed research synthesis was that in teaching my PhD students I love to provide them with my own concrete examples of research that I have done to help them understand the various methods.  Over the semester I conducted this mixed research synthesis I was fortunate to have Jennifer Woynar, my wonderful co-author, as my graduate assistant. This opportunity provided Jen with hands on experience with doing this type of research synthesis which can enhance the breadth and depth of understanding complex problems or phenomena.

Jennifer Woynar

Jennifer Woynar:

As a first-year BSN-PhD student, I was excited to embark on this mixed research synthesis adventure with Dr. Beck. The connection between the qualitative and quantitative data provided me, as the reader, with both the emotional journey of mothers with preterm infants, as well as interventional studies to build on that data.  Rating the articles based on the CASP scores was engaging and I felt supported in discussing and resolving any incongruences with these ratings.  Overall this was a very meaningful experience and I hope that the reader enjoys this work.


Embedding a Palliative Approach in Nursing Care Delivery

We are delighted to feature the open access article titled “Embedding a Palliative Approach in Nursing Care Delivery: An Integrated Knowledge Synthesis” authored by Richard Sawatzky, PhD; Pat Porterfield, MSN; Della Roberts, MSN; Joyce Lee, PhD; Leah Liang, MSN; Sheryl Reimer-Kirkham, PhD; Barb Pesut, PhD; Tilly Schalkwyk, MSN; Kelli Stajduhar, PhD; Carolyn Tayler, MSA; Jennifer Baumbusch, PhD; and Sally Thorne, PhD. This article not only addresses the significant challenges of palliative care, but also serves as an example of the translation of knowledge into practice. We welcome you to download and read the article at any time – it is permanently available at no cost to readers.  Then return here and share your comments and ideas!  This is a message from Dr. Sawatzky about the work of this team of authors:

“A palliative approach is not a service” (quote from Carolyn Tayler)

Richard Sawatzky

Although we realize that end of life care may require care from professionals who have been formally trained in palliative care, mostpeople who have life limiting illnesses receive care in settings where access to palliative care professionals is limited. To address this, our team has been studying how the notion of “a palliative approach” can help to embed general principles and practices of palliative care broadly into the healthcare system. The Initiative for a Palliative Approach in Nursing: Evidence and Leadership (, led by Kelli Stajduhar and Carolyn Tayler) engages nurse researchers, practitioners, and administrators in British Columbia, Canada, who share a common goal to integrate a palliative approach throughout the healthcare system. Building on our prior publication on “Conceptual Foundations of a Palliative Approach” (Sawatzky, Porterfield et al. 2016), the current article is one of the iPANEL studies that specifically seeks to synthesize across insights derived from different sources of knowledge relevant to a palliative approach as the basis for supporting nursing care teams to embed a palliative approach into their practice. In doing so, we have broadened the scope of what is

Pat Porterfield

typically considered “knowledge synthesis”, by translating general knowledge from previous studies into particular contexts of nursing practice. This knowledge synthesis process reflects the fundamental form of nursing knowledge application we articulated in a prior publication in ANS on “Particularizing the General” (Thorne and Sawatzky, 2014). We hope that, in addition to contributing to an understanding of a palliative approach, the article will spark further discourse about effective methodologies for particularizing general knowledge within local contexts of everyday nursing practice.

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