Research priorities in health and nursing knowledge areas


The debate on health research priorities requires updating at a time in which the areas of knowledge and the research lines in nursing, guides the scientific production of this field, it comes to occupy a privileged space the agenda for discussions in the area.

The nursing profession is as a field of knowledge applied in the large area of healthcare and with such aligns to the healthcare policies in a more general way. Thinking about research priorities in nursing means to point focuses of interest and investment for which all researchers can build consensus.

The need for clear definitions of priorities and policies for healthcare research has been highlighted in the national and international scenario in recent years. The National Policy for Science, Technology and Innovation in Health (PNCTIS) defines the health research as the set of knowledge, technologies and innovations produced that result in improvement of the population's health, highlighting the applied nature of this field of research.

The National Agenda for Health Research Priorities (ANPPS) is defined as a management instrument of by which the Ministry of Health (MS) to raise the priorities of s to search for this field. It is as a fundamental part of PNCTIS and the objective increase selectivity and directing them to induction of initiatives to promote research in the country.

The ANPPS has as assumption respecting the national needs and regional health and increase the induction selective for the production of knowledge and material goods and procedural in priority areas for the development of social policies.

The healthcare research policies and the ANPPS are currently guiding the allocation of resources from the Ministry of Health for research and scientific advance, impacting overall Brazilian investments for the development of science, technology and innovation. This observation requires a positioning of nursing regarding its alignment or independence in relation to the Agenda in defining its priorities for research and also of its research lines and areas of knowledge.

With the growth seen in recent years of graduate Courses in nursing also the number of researchers has been showing exponential growth, with impact on the demands the development agencies and on the resources available for the area. Moreover, this growth has not been able to correct the asymmetries between geographical regions. It is worth pointing out that the distribution of Doctoral Courses in Nursing in Brazil is the same subservient asymmetry between the Brazilian regions, in the set of post-graduations, evidencing the concentration of these programs in the Southeast Region, and in a way, the perpetuation of the lack of research, investigators and training of doctors in some regions of the country.

The discussion of the priorities for research in nursing is not new in the field, since the document Strategic Agenda for Research and Graduate Studies of Brazilian Nursing, approved in 2003, in Rio de Janeiro, during the 55th CBEn, proposes the collective construction of a national agenda of research priorities in nursing, with a selection of research topics and problems, based on the relationship between the initiatives of universities and social demands.

The establishment of research priorities in nursing involves adjusting the focus of this research field on what is essential to give visibility to knowledge itself composed, i.e. in nursing care as theoretical category, in the subjects of care, in professional skills also in major national cross-sectional problems, so as to better define the disciplinary field and the interdisciplinary aspect of this field of knowledge.

In this context, starting from the proposition of 24 Sub-agendas and considering the historical movement of nursing research development, we propose a reordering of the research fields.

The priorities for research in nursing, therefore, as we propose, should be defined as having guiding axes: nursing care and their subjects; the problems cross national; professional skills; and the research objects that require induction for its strengthening. The priorities for research in nursing, therefore, must be defined having as paradigms guiding nursing care, subject of care, national cross-sectional problems, professional skills and research fields that require induction for its development and strengthening, characterizing the practice of disciplinary research field, focused not only on morbid processes and clinical problem, but the integral vision of the health-disease process.

These guiding paradigms require the alignment of research lines in thematic axes, that characterizes the practice of research in this field, which are: 1) Health, Environment, Labor and Biosafety in Nursing; 2) Evaluation of Technologies for Nursing and Health Economics; 3) Clinical Research in Nursing; 4) Management of Health Work and Education; 5) Health Systems and Policies; 6) Nursing Care of the Health of the Elderly; 7) Nursing Care for Women's Health; 8) Nursing Care of the Child and Adolescent Health; 9) Nursing Care for Mental Health; 10) Nursing Care for Communicable Diseases; 11) Nursing Care for Non-Communicable Diseases.

In turn, the strengthening of technological research and innovation is presented as a challenge, making products and processes of nursing care, seeking to better define the development of hard technologies, but also relational technologies of care.

The challenge the object of research must be faced, articulating them the process of caring for nursing and its requirements and special conditions, allowing circumscribe one field of self-knowledge, impacting both research and professional practice.

It is stated, thus the specificity of nursing research priorities in the context of healthcare research in order to allow the articulation of auxiliary theories with its own paradigms guiding this field of knowledge, in order to construct a nursing science, as proposed by several authors.

We conclude the need to characterize the research practice in the field of nursing, focused not only on morbid processes and in clinical problems, but an integral vision of the health-disease process, articulated the inter and transdisciplinarity aspects, but without fail to outline its own field of knowledge, its disciplinarity.


Denize Cristina de Oliveira
Full professor at the School of Nursing, State University of Rio de Janeiro, Graduate Program in Nursing and Social Psychology / UERJ.

Direitos autorais 2014 Denize Cristina de Oliveira

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