Center for Advanced Practice


Nursing Research Priorities in the Pediatric Emergency Care Applied Research Network (PECARN): Reaching Consensus Through the Delphi Method.

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Journal of emergency nursing: JEN : official publication of the Emergency Department Nurses Association

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INTRODUCTION: Pediatric emergency nurses who are directly involved in clinical care are in key positions to identify the needs and concerns of patients and their families. The 2010 Institute of Medicine report on the future of nursing supports the active participation of nurses in the design and implementation of solutions to improve health outcomes. Although prior efforts have assessed the need for research education within the Pediatric Emergency Care Applied Research Network (PECARN), no systematic efforts have assessed nursing priorities for research in the pediatric ED setting.

METHODS: The Delphi technique was used to reach consensus among emergency nurses in the PECARN network regarding research priorities for pediatric emergency care. The Delphi technique uses an iterative process by offering multiple rounds of data collection. Participants had the opportunity to provide feedback during each round of data collection with the goal of reaching consensus about clinical and workforce priorities.

RESULTS: A total of 131 nurses participated in all 3 rounds of the survey. The participants represented the majority of the PECARN sites and all 4 regions of the United States. Through consensus 10 clinical and 8 workforce priorities were identified.

DISCUSSION: The PECARN network provided an infrastructure to gain expert consensus from nurses on the most current priories that researchers should focus their efforts and resources. The results of the study will help inform further nursing research studies (for PECARN and otherwise) that address patient care and nursing practice issues for pediatric ED patients.


Child, Delphi Technique, Emergency Nursing, Emergency Service, Hospital, Female, Humans, Male, Nursing Research, Pediatric Nursing, United States



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