It is assumed by most of the public and patients that the activities of health care professionals is "scientific", based firmly on the results of scientific research and subject to resource constraints of high quality. However, when practice patterns are studied, it is often found that health care interventions have not been evaluated, and even when they have, the evidence on effectiveness is not evenly applied (Hewitt-Taylor, 2002).
Over the last decade the themes of evidence-based health care have become a widely discussed. The main thrust is provided with the impetus of evidence based practice movement, which stresses the "conscientious, explicit and judicious use of current best practice in making decisions about care of individual patients" (Sackett, 1996). Evidence based approach is applicable for the various fields of health care and nursing is not an exclusion.
There are several information sources, which are reliable for supporting clinical decision-making in clinical/nursing practice (see Fig. 1 at the Appendix). The highest level of evidence is presented by systematic reviews and meta-analyses of randomised controlled trials (RCTs). RCTs play the central role in the system of evidence-based practice; their results are "gold standard" of evidence-based practice. Other types of the researches, e.g. cohort studies, case - control and case-report studies, have only limited value for decision-making process. But in some conditions, for example, when the use of randomised controlled trials is restricted by ethical or technological considerations cohort studies and series of case reports can be very important for developing clinical standards and practical guidelines (Brown, Crawford & Hicks, 2003).
In the United Kingdom there is a call for evidence-based health care (DOH, 1996) and for a focus on evaluating and improving clinical effectiveness (Gray, 1997). Evidence came from researches (mainly quantitative), which should inform practice in the order that the effectiveness and efficacy, acceptability and responsiveness of health care could be optimised. In other words, there is widely introduced research-based practice in nursing.
Two articles published by the British researchers in two prominent nursing journals (Coulling, 2005 & Maclellan) are dedicated to the problem of nursing care providing to the patients with the post-operative pain syndrome.
Using template we will examine these two research articles and identify how these articles reflect the key principles of the research process in nursing.
The titles of both articles clearly and explicitly indicate the content and research approach taken. The abstracts of these articles contain all necessary details about the study design, used methods of research as well as about key findings. Both articles include the section of literature review, which contains relevant discussion on previous research and provides a summary of the key findings emerging from the literature. The selection of articles in the literature review allows identifying the necessity of proposed research. Thus McLellan's study (2005) was aimed "to introduce a nurse-led