Needs Assessment and Gap Analysis Essay.

Needs Assessment and Gap Analysis Essay.



Several tools have been applied by healthcare providers to assess the effectiveness and efficiency of healthcare services provided. However, needs assessment and gap analysis is the most efficient way to determine the healthcare needs of patients and come up with relent solution to patient problems. Needs assessment and gap analysis provides useful information on the current practices and the expected strategies that should be applied to achieve the desired goals and objectives. This paper contains two parts which aim at conducting the needs assessment and gap analysis of the health needs of medical-surgical patients, specifically.Needs Assessment and Gap Analysis Essay.


Part I.

A needs assessment is a systematic process of appropriate information gathering and the development of a sufficient and adequate educational system or program that will address the needs of the specific group. The identified needs and wants of the patient is referred to as the gap. Important information is first gathered and adequately analyzed to come up with a valid conclusion. This information can be used to determine the most appropriate decision and program to be initiated. Existing programs can also be reviewed if need be. Needs Assessment and Gap Analysis Essay.

There are several steps to perform when conducting a needs assessment. One of the steps is to review current and professional pieces of literature.  After an in-depth review of the contemporary professional writings concerning medical-surgical patients, specific patient care that patients require, is identified. For instance, current professional pieces of literature have proven that surgical patients such as orthopedic patients are at a high risk of being infected by surgical-site infections. The specific area that this analysis emphasizes is the surgical patients in the Surgical Department. These patients include orthopedic patients.Needs Assessment and Gap Analysis Essay.

An evidence-based article by Annette, et., al, 2015, indicates that many Orthopedic Patients have been infected by wounds and Surgical –Site infections after undergoing a surgical procedure. This problem should be critically analyzed, and a lasting solution should be established. Other factors such as age, wound-contamination, and other related infections were also identified as the main risk factors of Surgical-Site disease.Needs Assessment and Gap Analysis Essay.

From the above steps on conducting a needs assessment, it is clear that the identified health need or problem is Surgical-Site Infections(SSI) in orthopedic patients. As per the needs assessment guidelines, the most effective and efficient control method or treatment method is determined. This is conducted as the third step after identifying the specific patient health issue. According to an article by Berríos, et., al 2017, one of the most recommended methods of treating SSIs is by using Parenteral Antimicrobial Prophylaxis. The findings from this article were valid and relevant to our assessment since the methods used were up to standard.Needs Assessment and Gap Analysis Essay.

This article also provides Nonparenteral Antimicrobial Prophylaxis, Normothermia, Glycemic Control, blood transfusion, and oxygenation as the other methods of controlling and treating SSIs in surgical patients such as orthopedic patients. An article by Malizos, et., al, 2017, also provides fast-resorbable antibiotic-loaded hydrogen and the popular and most effective way of treating SSIs. This article is valid and credible for our needs assessment on medical-surgical patients since the evaluation of various laboratory tests and X-ray samples was performed as part of the research method.    Needs Assessment and Gap Analysis Essay.

This article has also facilitated the method of needs assessment that involves the identification of a new and relevant technology related to the methods of solving the patient health problem. The provided evidence-based kinds of literature elaborate on the required plans and steps that should be followed when providing care to surgical patients such as orthopedic patients. However, during the identification of the gap, it is important to assess the current health practices that nurses and healthcare providers apply during the treatment of orthopedic patients and other surgical patients.Needs Assessment and Gap Analysis Essay.

Samad, et., al, 2019, elaborates in an article that Identification of pathogenic bacteria that are isolated from the bones and tissues, and their pattern in antibiotic susceptibility is commonly used practice today. The current practice involves bacterial assessment while the desired practices recommend the use of modern technology in the treatment of SSIs.Needs Assessment and Gap Analysis Essay.

Therefore, the gap or patient need that can be identified is that modern technology is not effectively utilized to treat SSIs in medical-surgical patients such as orthopedic patients. The gap is not in knowledge in most healthcare facilities since modern technology has not been used to treat SSIs. An article by Papas, et., al 2018, provides screening of Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus as the best method of treating SSIs. One of the best teaching methods to fill the healthcare gap in the surgery department is by using a case study. Case study presentation is another technique which is used in the evaluation of the gap. Use of case study is essential since it provides concrete and practical solutions that can be applied on day to day operational activities. Listed below, are the five main objectives of a case study presentation:

  • One of the main objectives of a case study presentation is to give the researcher a real expertise experience and understanding of their subject. During normal classes and teachings, students are majorly exposed to the theory part of healthcare provision However, case studies helps the students to get an expertise experience on their learning subjects. Thus, the students will obtain an in-depth understanding of the healthcare sector and the main objectives of the studies.Needs Assessment and Gap Analysis Essay.
  •  It also provides a perfect knowledge of the real-world in the healthcare setting. The process of using case study helps to equip the student and the researcher with the right skill and knowledge required when handling different patients in the healthcare setting. When students are given a chance to closely relate with the patients, their knowledge on the needs and priorities of the patients will be upheld.
  • Another objective of a case study presentation is that it makes medical and nursing education easier and more interesting for students. When students are exposed to various patient issues through case studies, they get a new and practical experience of the healthcare setting. Therefore, this makes their learning process interesting as opposed to only theories and classroom teachings.
  • Case studies also encourage the students and researchers to critically analyze and control their own actions during healthcare provision. This in turn instills the spirit of accountability in students. It also enhances decision making since it enables the students to differentiate between actions that have a positive or a negative impact towards healthcare provision. Needs Assessment and Gap Analysis Essay.
  • Finally, case studies increase the effectiveness of the learning process by making it more qualitative. Qualitative methods studies enhance credibility and accountability to the research findings and learning methods used. Thus, the case study ensures that inclusivity is embraced in the learning process. This is because different patients have different patient care needs. Therefore, familiarizing the students with different categories of patients will motivate and equip them with the necessary knowledge and understanding of these different needs, hence upholding efficiency and effectiveness.Needs Assessment and Gap Analysis Essay.

Part II.

A practice journal by Schweizer, et., al, 2015, also addresses the identified gap in the use of modern technology to treat SSIs for surgical patients such as orthopedic patients. This journal suggests that evidence-based bundle has a substantial impact on the reducing rates of Staphylococcus aureus SSIs in surgical patients. The interventions such as laboratory assessments and eligibility embraced in this journal makes it reliable and relevant for filling the gap.Needs Assessment and Gap Analysis Essay.

The findings from this evidence base journal indicate that the number of SSIs decreased after adhering to the evidence-based bundle. Additionally, the number of SSIs that was recorded in cases of emergency operation procedures was higher than those for scheduled operations. These findings are applicable to the medical-surgical area of nursing practice. This journal is following the current guidelines for the prevention of SSIs.  Similarly, the Surgical Care Improvement Project also encourages the use of vancomycin for patients with unknown S aureus status.

As an advanced practice nurse, I will always ensure that the outlines provided in the evidence-based surgical bundle are adhered to. One of the provided methods is by screening S aureus in patients before any surgical procedure. The findings in the above article have proven that these methods have reduced mortality rates during surgery, hence upholding patient safety.Needs Assessment and Gap Analysis Essay.


In conclusion, it is important for all healthcare providers always to embrace the use of modern technology to solve health problems such as SSIs. Importantly, a needs assessment and gap analysis should continuously be optimized to determine patient needs. Lastly, research and critical evaluation of health problems and possible solution should always be conducted to facilitate decision making during healthcare provision.Needs Assessment and Gap Analysis Essay.