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neuroscience nursing, priority setting, research



  1. Hinkle, Janice L.
  2. Alexander, Sheila
  3. Avanecean, Donna
  4. Batten, Janene
  5. Bautista, Cynthia
  6. Hundt, Beth
  7. Rhudy, Lori


ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: The American Association of Neuroscience Nurses established a 6-member Research Agenda Task Force in 2019 to identify neuroscience nursing research priorities to lead the field for the next 3 to 5 years. An early step in the process was a literature search to gain an understanding of the current landscape of neuroscience nursing research. METHODS: A search strategy was developed to locate relevant neuroscience nursing research. An experienced medical librarian performed a comprehensive systematic search of multiple databases. Task force members then further refined the search. A separate search was conducted to locate published research by 21 known neuroscience nurse researchers. RESULTS: An initial search located 466 qualitative articles and 1243 quantitative articles, with a further 655 articles published by known neuroscience nurse researchers. All 2364 citations were reviewed by task force members of the working in pairs to screen titles and abstracts for relevance. Nine categories of neuroscience nursing research were identified: quality of life, nursing practice, biomarkers, health promotion, professional development, technology, nursing care outcomes, assessment, and caregivers. Most of the research used descriptive methods, including both quantitative and qualitative methods of inquiry, providing a foundation for more rigorous investigation and interventional research. Research following stroke and the critical care setting were most prevalent. DISCUSSION: New and emerging trends in neuroscience nursing research include the use of technology, biomarkers, lay caregivers, strategies, and tools, including measure development for neurological assessment, and the evaluation of nursing practice including the practice environment and advanced practice nurse providers. Gaps were also evident. CONCLUSION: There is a significant need to expand neuroscience nursing in areas of emerging trends and to use rigorous methods to evaluate nursing practice effects on patient outcomes. The results of this search were used to revise the neuroscience nursing priorities last determined in 2011.