Purpose: To describe a model that guides nurses and other healthcare professionals through a systematic process for the change to evidence-based practice. The tremendous increases in clinical research and accessibility to research findings have prepared the way for the paradigm shift from traditional and intuition-driven practice to evidence-based practice. Although several models have emerged to guide practitioners in research utilization, practitioners continue to have difficulty synthesizing empirical and contextual evidence and integrating evidence-based changes into practice.
Organizing framework: The model is based on theoretical and research literature related to evidence-based practice, research utilization, standardized language, and change theory. In this model, practitioners are guided through the entire process of developing and integrating an evidence-based practice change. The model supports evidence-based practice changes derived from a combination of quantitative and qualitative data, clinical expertise, and contextual evidence.
Methods: The model was developed using sources identified on searches of Medline, CINAHL, and systematic reviews available on the Internet. Review topics were focused on evidence-based medicine and nursing, research utilization, and change process. Other sources included clinical expertise and quality-improvement information.
Conclusions: Practitioners need skills and resources to appraise, synthesize, and diffuse the best evidence into practice. Patient outcomes must reflect discipline-specific and interdisciplinary accountabilities. Collaboration between researchers and practitioners within and among disciplines will enhance the diffusion of evidence-based practice innovations.