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Perceptions of knowledge, research use and evidence-based practice among Swedish medical social workers – a qualitative study
Dalarna University, School of Education, Health and Social Studies, Social Work.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-2853-0575
Dalarna University, School of Education, Health and Social Studies, Caring Science/Nursing.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-5892-9897
2019 (English)Conference paper, Poster (with or without abstract) (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Background and aim: With the intention to do more good than harm, it is important to rely on practice that is rooted in evidence-based guidelines so that clients are given the exact care they need. Thus, from a client safety perspective, the social worker needs to apply evidence-based practice (EBP). Learning more about the medical social workers’ perceptions of EBP has the potential to contribute to an increased understanding of how best available knowledge can be implemented in medical social work settings to provide high quality and safe practice to clients. Therefore the aim of this study was to explore medical social workers’ perceptions of evidence-based practice (EBP), including factors relevant for the successful implementation of evidence into medical social work practice.

Methods: This is a qualitative study. Eight focus group interviews were conducted that included 27 medical social workers. Data were analyzed using qualitative content analysis.

Results: Analysis resulted in two categories: “knowledge in practice” and “challenges in relation to the implementation of EBP” and four subcategories: “practice based on research evidence or experience”, “obtaining new evidence of practice”, “research and the social work context”, and “barriers and facilitating factors”. Participants tended to perceive EBP as theoretical and positivistic while perceiving their own knowledge as eclectic and experience-based. Although they perceived the relevance of research findings to their practice, they expressed a need for support to translate research into policy and practice. They also reported that studies about their specific work were scarce.

Conclusion and implications: The facilitating factors suggested by the medical social workers which concerned, e.g., a specially designated person responsible for supporting the increased use of research findings, support for prioritization of time, increased opportunities for the sharing of knowledge, and time for consultations, need to be considered when promoting the implementation of EBP within medical social work settings. The medical social workers’ suggestion for the facilitation of knowledge exchange needs further investigation.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2019.
Keywords [en]
Evidence-based practice, Focus group interviews, Medical social worker
National Category
Social Work
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:du-29622OAI: oai:DiVA.org:du-29622DiVA, id: diva2:1294474
Conference
European Conference for Social Work Research 2019 (ECSWR), 10-12 april, Leuven, Belgium
Available from: 2019-03-07 Created: 2019-03-07 Last updated: 2019-03-07Bibliographically approved

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Udo, CamillaForsman, Henrietta

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

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Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • chicago-author-date
  • chicago-note-bibliography
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
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  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf