- Explain the function of research in Health and Social Care
What is research?
Research is an investigation which follows a systematic and scientific approach which looks into and studies new materials, sources etc. so that we can establish facts and reach conclusions. We decide that we need to research a topic when we have a question that needs to be answered or a problem that needs to be resolved. There are a number of ways to carry out research; however there are two main approaches which are qualitative and quantitative. Qualitative research mainly focuses on words and meanings, whereas quantitative research involves recording information what is found in a numerical form to enable the researchers to provide the public with statistics. Research in Health and Social Care can give us information about thoughts and opinions, attitudes, scientific facts, medical information and cultures. With any research gathered, health and social care professionals can then use it to make decisions, use it to change behaviour, improve standards of care etc.
Identifying a need
Workers in the health and social care industry have to plan every step they take, and every decision they make, and they use research principles to pinpoint the needs of an individual. In a doctors surgery, or in a hospital, the doctor takes a medical history of a patient in their first consultation, and he may take measurements such as blood pressure, their pulse rate, which may require blood samples so they can be analysed. It may come to the attention of a care home manager that one of her residents needs more assistance with their personal care, and they would then discuss this with the individual. Th e information that is gathered from these situations would then enable the professional to make decisions about treatments and care to meet the individual’s requirements. The precise needs of one individual could be alike to those of others; however before a new treatment or care routine is introduced...