Mary D. Naylor, PhD, RN, FAAN, Ellen M. Volpe, PhD, RN, Adam Lustig, MS, Heather J. Kelley, MA, Lori Melichar, PhD, Mark V. Pauly, PhD
To address a critical lack of evidence regarding nursing’s contribution to the delivery of high quality care, INQRI’s leadership team conducted a literature review designed to analyze peer-reviewed papers that addressed the relationships between nursing and the quality of patient care. This review focuses on literature published in 2004 (pre-INQRI) and 2009 (5-years post-INQRI’s launch) to evaluate the advances in this important line of inquiry and identify the potential contributions of the INQRI program.
The search identified 389 studies (161 in 2004; 228 in 2009), which examined the relationship between nursing and patient care quality. The number of published papers in all categories of study designs – non-experimental, quasi-experimental and experimental – increased between the years 2004 and 2009. The body of evidence regarding linkages between nursing and quality of care has increased in the depth of science, as seen in higher rates and quality of publications, enhanced methodological rigor, and evidence of stronger interdisciplinary collaboration. While INQRI’s contribution to this expanded body of knowledge is unclear, the evidence supports the increased importance of the program’s goal of measuring and enhancing nursing’s contributions to the quality of patient care.
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