Critiquing Quantitative Research article

Critiquing Quantitative Research article


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Article Critique Quantitative Assignment

Group 2

Emotion and Coping in the Aftermath of Medical Error: A Cross Country Exploration.














  • Was the most rigorous possible design used, given the purpose of the research? The purpose of this research was to,” investigate the following the professional or personal disruption experienced after making an error, b) the emotional response and coping strategies used, c) the relationship between emotions and coping strategy selection, d) influential factors in clinicians’ responses, and e) perceptions of organizational support.” A cross sectional, cross country survey of 265 medical professionals was conducted in order to research and evaluate how medical errors influence and effect medical professionals. A cross sectional study, “is an observational type of study that analyzes data and variables collected at one given point of time across a sample population”. I think a cross sectional study was the most rigorous possible design used because the study purpose is to to describe the overall picture of a situational problem by asking a cross-section of a given population at one specified moment in time.
  • Were appropriate comparisons made to enhance interpretability of the findings? A number of variables, such as level of emotions or type of emotions, were placed in comparison to facilitate easy interpretation of the data.
  • Was the number of data collection points appropriate? I believe the data collection process was appropriate because the study was able to gather and measure information on topic of interest. The data collection was organized and efficient which enabled the researchers to test hypotheses, and evaluate outcomes.
  • Did the design minimize biases and threats to the validity of the study? The design minimized biases because they kept the data confidential and distributed on multiple platforms. “Participants were presented with the study information sheet and consent form and completed an online or paper survey. No identifiable information was gathered, surveys were completed confidentially, and paper copies were returned using freepost envelopes.”


Population and Sample

  • Was the population identified and described? Was the sample described in sufficient detail? Yes, the population and sample were described in sufficient detail. The population was 265 physicians and nurses in 2 large teaching hospitals in the United Kingdom and the United States. The sample size was described as the following, “A responder sample was used, and a cross-section of health professionals was recruited in this way, but only data from the physicians and nurses were included because the sample sizes of the other health professions, despite being proportional, were too small to draw statistical comparisons.”
  • Was the best possible sampling design used to enhance the sample’s representativeness? Were sample biases minimized? The responses received through responder sampling are commonly biased towards the given topic. As a responder the person usually chooses to volunteer for the survey because they might have strong opinion towards the subject.
  • Was the sample size adequate? Was a power analysis used to estimate sample size needs? The sample size was adequate and fit into the appropriate demographics for the given study. The study never stated if a power analysis was used to estimate the sample size needs.



Data Collection and Measurement

  • Were key variable operationalized using the best possible method? (Interviews, observations, and so on?) Yes, the researchers used the Health Professional Experience of Error Questionnaire (HPEEQ) to assess the emotional and coping strategies of the healthcare professionals who made medical errors. This tool was developed from past data describing different levels of error.


  • Are the specific instruments adequately described, and were they good choices, given the study population? The study population consisted of nurses and physicians in two teaching hospitals. The instruments used for the study included descriptive statistics, surveys, and the questionnaire. The questionnaire was highly described including what each section was composed of and what is was measuring. The authors of the study explained the self-reported measures were the best option due to the nature of the study: medical errors and emotion regarding the medical errors.



  • Did the report provide evidence that the data collection methods yielded data that were high on reliability and validity? No, but the results were taken directly from the study itself. The authors did not report the validity of the study. They stated that it was difficult to assess the assessment tool because it is a relatively new area of research. They also stated that since it is a new area of research, there is not much to compare the study against.




  • If there was an intervention, was it adequately described, and was it properly implemented? Did most participants allocated to the intervention group actually receive it? The study was conducted to see how healthcare professionals cope with the aftermath or medical errors. The researches speak of the emotional and mental strain that these errors cause physicians and nurses. The study used surveys to collect data from the healthcare teams to see what resources are available after errors have occurred. The study confirmed that there are resources available for healthcare professionals after medical errors are made.


  • Were the data collected in a manner that minimized bias? Were the staff who collected data appropriately trained? The study was a cross sectional cross-country study that invited all healthcare professional to participate. They used newsletter, paper copies at trainings and emails to get the surveys data collection. In the end the data only included physicians and nurses because there was an inadequate number of other participants.



Data Analysis

  • Were appropriate statistical methods used? Yes, descriptive statistics were used in this study. The researchers provided percentages of describe the population study (125 physicans and 145 nurses (N=265), UK sample included 61 physicians and 65 nurses, etc.)


  • Was the most powerful analytic method used? (eg., did the analysis control for confounding variables?) The researchers used a multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA) to analyze for different variables. Initially they assumed location of the subjects would make a difference in results and later found out that it played a smaller role than they thought.


  • Were Type I and Type II errors avoided or minimized? Type I and II errors were avoided because this study was just based on finding the amount of disruption after a medical error, the emotional response and the subsequent coping strategies, the factors influencing the response and the population’s perception of support. The study did not have a strong hypothesis.



Findings and Interpretation


  • Was information about statistical significance presented? Statistical significant is very important information. If the researchers report that the findings are statistically significant, it means that the results are true and able to be copied and reproduced exactly with a new sample. The researchers also report the significant level, the significant level it is an index of how probable it is that the results are reliable and represented by the latter p . In our article “Emotion and Coping in the Aftermath of Medical Error: A Cross-Country Exploration” in the result section the researches discuss statistical significant in the parts.”
  • Was information about effect size and precision of estimates presented? Confidence interval (CI) the range of values with in which a population parameter is estimated to lie at specified probability. CI it is as a range of possible values for the population mean. In our article ” Emotion and Coping in the Aftermath of Medical Error: A Cross-Country table 1 we can see that our CI is 95 percent confidence level has a 95 percent chance of capturing the population mean. That means if the experiment were repeated many times, 95 percent of the CIs would contain the true population mean.
  • Was clinical significance of the findings discussed? Clinical significant is the practical important of researchers results in terms of whether they have actually, noticeable effect on the daily lives of patients. “Apply the resource to two different hospitals The Brigham and Women’s Hospital that support the program that was develops and continue to improve based on growing and understanding of how best to help clinicians how to manage with unfortunate events. “

Summary Assessment

  • Limitations of this study included recall of events and social desirability. Some of the participants may have not answered truthfully because of fear of what others might think of their behaviors.
  • “Participants were asked to recall emotion and coping responses relating to previous error, but the ability to retrieve this episodic information regarding a discrete event declines quickly over time, rendering these reports subject to inaccuracies, particularly in the detail (Armitage, et al, 2015).”
  • It is hard to say that this study is valid because of the many factors that affect people’s emotions and there is no true way to know whether they are answering truthfully.
  • This study does contribute meaningful evidence that can be used in nursing practice.
  • Errors need to be reported and noticed so that changes can be implemented to reduce errors from happening.
  • Nurses need to have a program where they can deal with the emotional effects of making medical errors.
  • In the study they mentioned peer programs where the nurses can talk about their feelings with trained peer supporters. If nurses had more emotional support, they might be more open to discussing these medical errors.
  • “An extrapolation from this and many other studies would suggest that helping support clinicians after adverse events might, in addition to preventing further errors and individual burnout, facilitate more transparent and compassionate disclosure (Armitage, et al, 2015).”
  • If nurses were able to disclose information regarding the error and be provided with ways to cope and prevent further errors from happening it would benefit both the patient and the nurse.









Armitage, G., Gardner, P., Harrison, R., et al, Emotion and Coping in the Aftermath of Medical Error: A Cross Country Exploration. Journal of Patient Safety. 2015;11:28-35.



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