PURPOSE: Journal Clubs (JCs) for nurses and allied health professionals have been held in an Italian pediatric hospital since April 2008. This study aimed to: examine what type of articles have been used during JCs across 5years; investigate the potential implications for clinical and organizational practice; assess the participants' satisfaction about JCs and their contribution to professional development.
DESIGN AND METHODS: Using a retrospective design, all articles proposed in the JCs were examined. Specific criteria were used to evaluate the implications for practice within the hospital, which were classified as direct or indirect. Using a cross-sectional design, 63 JCs participants were asked to express their opinion and satisfaction about the JC sessions attended.
RESULTS: Overall, 132 articles were analyzed: most of them focused on pediatric care (64.4%) and nursing (96.2%). Almost half of the articles (n=60, 45.6%) were appraised as having brought implications for clinical practice, both direct (58.3%) and indirect (41.7%). Forty-one participants (12 attendees; 29 active participants) completed a questionnaire about their opinion about JCs. Most of participants (80.5%) reported that the topics selected for the JCs were interesting and relevant to their everyday practice.
CONCLUSIONS: Multidisciplinary JCs were considered useful for clinical practice, improvement of the quality of care, and professional development. However, lack of pragmatism and the difficulty to bridge the gap between research and practice were reported as weaknesses.
PRACTICE IMPLICATIONS: JCs can represent a quality improvement strategy for promoting research utilization among health professionals and thereby improving the quality of care.