"A Process of Decision Making by Caregivers of Family Members with Heart Failure" is a perfect example of a paper on social and family issues. A population of twenty individuals was selected from cardiology offices, inpatient hospital units, or adult daycare facilities over a 1 year period from 2008-2009. Five caregivers of patients with HF were interviewed from all the four stages of the HF. 2) How was the sample selected? What are the strengths and weaknesses of this sampling strategy? A stratified sampling method was used. The sample included 20 caregivers of family members of patients with HF from the Southeastern United States.
To be selected as a participant, one had to be related to the patient with HF, and or give assistance to the patient on two key activities of daily living, offer one activity of daily living, and not be compensated for the services. This sampling strategy considered patients from all the four stages according to HF classification. The stratified sampling method focuses on important subpopulations and ignores irrelevant ones, improves the efficiency of estimation, and permits greater balancing of statistical power of tests of differences between strata by sampling equal numbers from strata varying widely in size.
On the other hand, it requires the selection of relevant stratification variables which can be difficult (Deming, 1966). 3) Were the subjects in this study vulnerable? Were there any risks for them as the result of participation in the research study? The subjects were not vulnerable. Despite being audiotaped, they were interviewed in private and mutually agreed on locations. This can give somebody the idea that whatever is said can be used anywhere, including a court of law as evidence, therefore, one is very conscious of what they say.
Further, their personal information or anything that could lead to their identification was not disclosed. 4) Are there any HIPAA concerns that are evident in this study? HIPAA concerns are observed in the study. HIPAA states that no personal information should be disclosed that can lead to the identification of the person if the information is being used for research and the consent of the individual must be sought before transmitting health information related to the individual in any form of media, whether electronic, paper or oral.
The participants willingly agreed to be audiotaped. 5) What methods were put in place to ensure that the subjects were giving true informed consent? Although there is no clear information as to how the consent was obtained from caregivers, we are only informed that they agreed to be interviewed, chose the venue for the interview and the questions asked were broad and open statements. 6) What was the setting for the study? The study setting involved a sample of caregivers of family members of patients with HF in the Southeastern United States.
20 participants, five from each of the four stages of the HF classification, were recruited from cardiology offices, inpatient hospital units, or adult daycare facilities over a 12-month period from 2008– 2009. For one to be a participant, he or she had to be related to the patient with HF, provide one activity of daily living, and/or assist the care recipient with two instrumental activities of daily living and not be paid for services. The interviews took place in private locations such as the homes of the caregivers, their workplace, or the library. 7) Was the sample adequate for the research design that was selected? Since a qualitative design using grounded theory methods was used, it required that a certain number of interviewees be selected from each of the four classes of HF.
The sample selected is adequate because it is not a large group that will make the research costly and it is also not a tiny group that will make the data biased. 20 participants were a good size to save time.
Thomas, David (1998). Grounded theory in the analysis of qualitative data. HRMAS Newsletters, 9-11.
Byers, Peggy, & Wilcox, James (1988). Focus groups: A qualitative opportunity for researchers.
Deming, W. Edwards. (1966). Some theory of sampling. Dover Publications.