Using your PICO question, search for a relevant primary research article and critique the article for its potential to provide an evidence-based solution. Note that the article you find here can be used in your final project. In your initial post discuss the following:

1. What type of design was used?
2. Was the sample size appropriate and was a power analysis used to estimate sample size needs?
3. If an instrument was used, was the validity and reliability reported on?
4. What was the statistical or clinical significance of the findings?
5. If the results are generalizable, how can these findings be used in nursing practice?
6. Are the best practices of research ethics addressed?


Respond to two of your peers and briefly analyze their articles, commenting on areas where you agree or differ on the findings and why.


My PICO question for this milestone is does the amount of workload that nurses need to accomplish affect the safety and quality of patient care when the department is properly staffed with support members and safe nurse-to-patient ratios compared to when units are not? A primary research article that I chose to critique is called Nurse’s perceptions on the effects of high nursing workload on patient care in an intensive care unit of a referral hospital in Malawi: a qualitative study by Banda et al. (2022). This study surveys 10 nurses working in the ICU and asks about their perspectives on the workload (Banda et al. (2022).

The design of the study is a descriptive qualitative design with a sample size of 10 full-time nurses working in the ICU. The researchers thoughtfully chose their participants, and specifically used a smaller sample size because of the time constraint because larger sample sizes were more time consuming (Banda et al., 2022). Three participants of the study analyzed the validity of the study (Banda et al., 2022). Interviews were recorded through digital audio recorder and a journal with notes was recorded throughout the study for consistency (Banda et al., 2022).

From the interviews, data was analyzed and coded to show that there were four reoccurring themes in the study: “care compromised, compromised patient safety, impact on nurse capacity and impact on nurses’ wellbeing” (Banda et al., 2022). Findings from the studies with supported data through interview quotes were resulted for each theme in the study. Nurses were unable to finish their tasks in a timely manner and could not provide the quality care necessary for patients leading to compromised care (Banda et al., 2022). Nurses voiced their concerns regarding patient safety when their workload was increased (Banda et al., 2022). One example provided was that due to exhaustion, wrong medications were prepared (Banda et al., 2022). Nurses in the surveys also provided subjective information reporting that high workload correlated to negative performance, which impacted nurse capacity (Banda et al., 2022). Lastly, nurse’s wellbeing is compromised due to higher-than-normal workload because the ICU patients require a lot of attention and physical and mental stress (Banda et al., 2022).

The results are generalized in ICU nurses, but there are limitations to the findings as the study mentions that the researchers did not include managers. The study also does not include other department nurses such as med-surg, labor and delivery, emergency room, etc. However, I believe it is safe to generalize that all nurses would feel the way ICU nurses would feel, even if the acuity level of patients is not as high. With more workload under a certain time constraint, it is natural to feel more stress and overwhelmed as a human being.

The best practices of research ethics were addressed; no harm was done to any voluntary participants. All nurses were provided informed consent, and all participants were not named and stayed anonymous. According to the researchers, “all study methods were performed in accordance with he relevant guidelines and regulations” (Banda et al., 2022).


Banda, Z., Simbota, M., & Mula, C. (2022). Nurses’ perceptions on the effects of high nursing workload on patient care in an intensive care unit of a referral hospital in Malawi: A qualitative study. BMC Nursing, 21(1).

Required Resources that might help:
Textbook: Essentials of Nursing Research: Appraising Evidence for Nursing Practice, Chapters 3 (pp. 48–58) and 6

Chapter 3 (pp. 48–58) discusses how to critique research articles. Chapter 6 reviews how to obtain research articles and the role of literature reviews.

This research guide was created specifically for the Nursing Program and contains a variety of resources related to the assignments in this course. For this module, pay particular attention to the annotated bibliography, located under the “Course Final Project” tab, to assist you in completing Milestone Three assignment

The Critical Appraisal Skills Program (CASP) offers critical appraisal checklists for evaluating research. This resource will allow for a critical analysis of a research study for quality. This can be used to support your Milestone Three submission.
Research guides are developed by librarians to help you find and locate the information you need for your classes, papers, and projects. This guide explains the purpose and process of preparing an annotated bibliography and includes examples. Use this resource to assist you in completing Milestone Three of the final project.





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