Research and Evidence-based Practice


The purpose of the research is to determine how different clinical alarms differ in perception. Specifically, the study answers how the perception of labor nurses aligns and contrasts with the perception of intensive care unit nurses perception on clinical alarms. There are different types of alarms; for example, labor nurses set to care for healthy women and those that ICU nurses set to care for critically ill patients. The two groups of nurses could have a different perception of these alarms. The study seeks to identify the similarities and differences in their perceptions. The author justifies the importance of the research by giving background information that nurses are exposed to many alarms that cause them alarm fatigue.

Design and Methods

The overall design used in the study is a qualitative approach, focus group method. The nurses were grouped and asked questions regarding their experiences in the utility of clinical alarms. The design and method are rigorous because qualitative research seeks to get insights from the respondents. The respondents answer questions through explanation; hence, they are given a chance to provide thorough answers. They are also systematic because the researchers made a setting in two hospitals, meaning they followed a specific plan.

Validity and Reliability

The study can be trusted because the results state that there was a consensus among the two groups of nurses that too many alarms cause fatigue. Besides, the results are consistent with another study carried out by Cho et al. (2016). They also correspond to some major theories that too many alarms lead to alarm fatigue, resulting in desensitization. When individuals are subjected to many alarms, they get used to them, get tired, and become desensitized. However, the study is partially valid because it did not precisely measure what it was supposed to measure. The aim was to determine the similarities and differences of how nurses perceive different clinical alarms. The results did not indicate whether there are differences in perception, only the similarity. Thus, the study is reliable but partially valid.

Findings and Conclusions

The findings are clinically significant. Given that nurses suffer from alarm fatigue, it calls for action in the healthcare system. The fatigue is dangerous because it could result in quality issues among some nurses. For example, if a nurse is irritated about the alarms and perhaps disturbing her peace, she could become more irritated and offer low-quality service to patients. The disturbance could also distract their practices leading to poor service. In the end, the patient suffers more, which is a concern. Hence, the findings are crucial in helping hospitals regulate the number of alarms subjected to nurses. It is significant in only setting the most vital alarms to avoid alarm fatigue.

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One of the study’s strengths is that the design allowed for an extensive understanding of the issue being studied. The focus groups offered comprehensive answers, contributing to the validity of the results. Secondly, the research includes all the study parts, including limitations and recommendations. Besides, it is well organized, making it easy to identify the main areas. However, its weakness is that the authors did not clearly define the similarities and differences as the aim of the study stated. Although they succeeded in the purpose of the study, they did not clearly state the expectation. Future research could look at what are the essential clinical alarms that the labor and ICU nurses should be subjected to frequent and which ones should not.


Cho, O., Kim, H., Lee, Y., & Cho, I. (2016). Clinical Alarms in Intensive Care Units: Perceived Obstacles of Alarm Management and Alarm Fatigue in Nurses. Healthcare Informatics Research, 22(1), 46.

Simpson, K., & Lyndon, A. (2019). False Alarms and Overmonitoring. Journal Of Nursing Care Quality, 34(1), 66-72.