Academic Success and Professional Development

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Topic of Interest: The topic of interest is heart failure management since I currently work as an RN and want to help manage such diseases in the future.
Research Article:Include full citation in APA format, as well as link or search details (such as DOI) Regalbuto, R., Maurer, M. S., Chapel, D., Mendez, J., & Shaffer, J. A. (2014). Joint Commission requirements for discharge instructions in patients with heart failure: Is understanding important for preventing readmissions? Journal of Cardiac Failure, 20(9), 641-649. Web.
Professional Practice Use:
One or more professional practice uses of the theories/concepts presented in the article
This article raises the issue of readmission for heart failure and considers, first of all, the approach to patients. There is a set of instructions that are given to patients with heart failure, which indicates the recommendations for action, as well as the parameters that physicians need to pay attention to. Among these parameters are, for example, diet, weight monitoring, a variety of physical exercises (Regalbuto et al., 2014). However, although these methods are undoubtedly useful because experts developed them following the needs of patients, no one checks whether patients follow these instructions.

As it was found out during the study, the majority of patients do not fully understand the instructions, primarily due to insufficient knowledge of the English language or due to an inadequate level of education. Following this article, we can conclude that in professional practice, it is useful to make sure that the patient accurately and unequivocally understands what the doctor tells him. As practice shows, the most challenging thing for patients is the appointment of a variety of medications and methods of their use, as well as subsequent actions after treatment (Regalbuto et al., 2014). Thus, in professional practice, particular emphasis should be placed on clarifying precisely these aspects of medicine, detailing the purpose and method of use of each of the drugs.

In addition to direct conclusions from the study, the approach to the way this study was conducted can also be adopted. Namely, in professional practice, it is useful to consider many demographic factors regarding the patient. These factors include, for example, age, social status, nationality, and it is especially worth highlighting the level of education and the primary language. All these factors can have a substantial impact both on the patient’s understanding of the doctor’s recommendations and on the treatment as a whole; therefore, in professional practice, specialists need to pay attention to them.

Research Analysis Matrix
Add more rows if necessary
Strengths of the Research Limitations of the Research Relevancy to Topic of Interest Notes
Promising research design, consisting of an original approach to a known problem. The relatively small size of the study group, which imposes certain restrictions on the reliability of the results. The article under study directly relates to the chosen topic because the research focuses specifically on the selected disease. Since this article raises the issues of readmission for patients suffering from heart failure and also discusses communication with patients, the information contained in this article is useful for professional activities.
Comprehensive follow-up data, which was obtained by using medical records, as well as making special follow-up calls. The likelihood that the tool used was not the most reliable for this study. Perhaps the selected methods are not the most reliable for determining the level of understanding of patients.
The inclusion in the study group of representatives of the most diverse layers with a variety of demographic features. In particular, the addition of a large group of people who speak Spanish has confirmed the importance of using the same primary language as the patient. This was exemplified by the fact that people, mainly speaking Spanish, perceived instructions much worse.

Justification of the Article

The article considered above is an analytical study, affecting the relationship between the patient’s demographic characteristics and the course of treatment. Although the material itself addresses directly heart failure described by Regalbuto et al., the approach can be applied in any medical practice. The main idea of this study and the central conclusion from it is the fact that despite the availability of detailed instructions, patients are not always able to understand them correctly (Regalbuto et al., 2014). Limitations to this may be a language barrier or a simple lack of knowledge and education in one area or another.

Following this, I would recommend that doctors and nurses treat patients more carefully and take into account not only medical but also social and demographic factors. Medical specialists must ensure the patient’s recovery, but this cannot be done by merely prescribing drugs. It is necessary that the patient fully understands the entire course of treatment. To do this, doctors and other professionals need to make sure that the proposed instructions are clear to the patient.

Summary of Analysis

The approach to the selection and analysis of peer-reviewed studies is a technique that is necessary primarily for the successful writing of a variety of articles. However, it can also be used for self-education and obtaining new information related to professional activities. First of all, it is necessary to decide for what purpose a search for peer-reviewed research is carried out. These articles can be divided into two categories: quantitative and qualitative research.

While the former provides clear statistics and is full of specific numbers, reports from the latter category are aimed at exploring and describing a variety of concepts (Smith, 2009). However, for whatever topic research would not be necessary, in any case, it is essential to pay attention to the relevance of the study to a given theme. It is also required to pay attention to how well the sources confirm the conclusions, and whether both the strengths and weaknesses of the study were taken into account.

Following this, it is necessary to identify and highlight the strategies for the information and the articles. First of all, the search for the topic that interests the researcher must be narrowed. The report should address any specific issue that is in the reader’s field of interest (Vassallo, 2018). This means that information needs to be searched not across the Internet, but through strictly delineated search resources, eliminating all the unnecessary topics and articles using various tools, such as date and keywords.

As a second strategy, which helps to find reliable and high-quality information, I suggest using materials only from trusted sources and with the most visits or citations. When searching for an article, one should first turn to well-known magazines, sites, and organizations that post only verified information. Often, these are a variety of paid resources, which with their limited access, confirm the lack of low-quality content.

As mentioned above, to search for a high-quality article, it is necessary to use the appropriate resources developed specifically for this task. The first such resource is Google Scholar, an offspring of the renowned search engine designed specifically to search for academic articles. Its advantages are the ability to specify the required date, as well as access to many citation styles. However, for professional activities, the CINHAL & MEDLINE combined search database seems much more useful to me. This database has several significant advantages, including searching only for nursing and medical articles only. Besides, this system searches only for peer-reviewed articles, ensuring their quality. These features help to significantly improve the quality of the materials one is looking for, the overall work efficiency, and the effectiveness of the result.


Regalbuto, R., Maurer, M. S., Chapel, D., Mendez, J., & Shaffer, J. A. (2014). Joint Commission requirements for discharge instructions in patients with heart failure: Is understanding important for preventing readmissions? Journal of Cardiac Failure, 20(9), 641-649. Web.

Smith, T. (2009). Critical appraisal of quantitative and qualitative research literature. Radiographer, 56(3), 6-10. Web.

Vassallo, J. (2018). WASP (Write a Scientific Paper): Critical appraisal of existing research. Early human development, 127, 98-100. Web.

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