Discuss the Contribution That Quantitative Research Can Make to Evidence Based Practice

This essay will examine the contribution that quantitative research makes to evidence-based clinical
practice. It will examine what such practice is and see what part quantitative research plays  
in determining how an individual patient is treated in a hospital near us, “our patient”.
In deciding how to treat “our patient” we bring not only high level quantitative evidence based
knowledge into play, but the substantial knowledge base of nursing in improving both the
outcome and experience for “our patient”.
Quantitative research refers to research using numerical data collection to support a question and
the relationships involved with that question. The objective of quantitative research is to
develop and employ mathematical models, theories or hypotheses related to that question.
Quantitative research is often contrasted to qualitative research; which is rather the
examination, analysis and interpretation of observations for the purpose of discovering
underlying meanings and patterns of relationships, including classifications of types of
questions in a manner that does not involve mathematical models. Qualitative research
produces information only on the particular cases studied; other questions found during the
study may or may not be extrapolated to apply to the wider population (Liamputtong, 2009).
Evidence based practice in health care refers to the process that includes discovering the best
research evidence in relation to the effectiveness or efficacy of various treatment options,
while subsequently deciding the relevance and importance of options to the patient. This
information is then considered and used in clinical practice while incorporating patient
values and tailoring this to the patient’s individuality (Liamputtong, 2009).
Evidence based practice research is represented as a five level hierarchy with the gold standard:  
level one being the systematic review of randomised...