Research Report



Medical advances, rising patient expectations and the vast diversity of health services today, mean that health care professionals work in a progressively more complex field.
The NHS executive, funded primary care research networks in England and Wales from 1998 in order to increase the capacity for research in primary care (Department of Health 2000). The number of research articles published in medical journals have increased substantially over the past few years (Britten N 2005). None the less, healthcare
professionals still have strong concerns about a wide spread lack of understanding of the nature and uses of such research (Jack SM 2006).
The following report will critically analyse the use of various theoretical approaches to research in the health care setting. We will explore methods of data collection and the different systems commonly used. The report will scrutinise ethical dimensions of research reports and what impact differing types of research activity has on the development of policy and practice. When any research is undertaken the first question should be ‘what sort of research should I use’. So many differing forms of research have been undertaken that it can be difficult to decide upon what technique to use. The frequently used types of research methods are quantitative and qualitative. At the most basic level, quantitative research methods are used when something needs to be measured, while qualitative methods are used when a question needs to be described and investigated in some depth (Shields, Twycross 2003). According to Cresswell (2003) one of the chief reasons for conducting a qualitative study is that the study is exploratory. The researcher seeks to listen to participants and build an understanding based on their ideas. Quantitative research on the other hand, includes a substantial amount of literature at the beginning of a study to provide direction for the research questions (2003 p32). There...