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Health and Fitness

Things Every Nursing And Healthcare Researcher Should Know About Casp Tool

CASP is the contraction of The Critical Appraisal Skill Programme tool. It is a tool to appraise the strengths and weaknesses of qualitative research methodology. CASP comprises ten important questions asking about the different methodological aspects of a study. It has a well-defined critical appraisal checklist that you can use in Cohort Studies, Case-Control Studies, Economic Evaluation, Randomised Controlled Trials, Diagnostic Studies, Systematic Reviews, Clinical Prediction Rule, and Qualitative studies.

Nursing and healthcare researchers use the CASP tool for appraising the quality of any of these research methodologies. This article will describe this critical appraisal skill program tool and its checklist for different methodologies.

What is CASP? 

As described earlier, the CASP checklist includes a series of prompt questions that helps the health care professionals and nurses to evaluate qualitative studies. The checklist of CASP consists of three main sections based on the following aspects:

  1. Results validity
  2. Results specifications
  3. Practical applications or the existence of results in local setups. 

The question in the CASP checklist aims to stimulate researchers’ thinking. It is not a traditional tick-box exercise. CASP tool allows researchers to skip any question if irrelevant to a given study design. The reason is many times, some of these prompt questions have no practical application in your area of research. These seven healthcare and nursing research methodologies, along with their CASP checklists, are as follows: 

1.1 CASP Randomised Controlled Trial Checklist:

The checklist guides researchers about the randomized controlled trial (RCT). CASP tool suggests we take into account several aspects while conducting RCT studies. The questions included in CASP RTC are as follows: 

  • Were the research questions focused?
  • Was the assignment of the participant to intervention randomized?
  • Were data of all the participants in a study included in the conclusion?
  • Were participants involved in a study blind?
  • Whether all the studied groups alike at the start of the RCT?
  • Did the author comprehend the intervention?
  • Whether the author report the precision of the estimate of the intervention?
  • Do the benefits of an intervention outweigh the harms?
  • Are the report’s results equally beneficial in the local setting?
  • Is a proposed intervention giving greater value to the people than the traditional intervention or treatment?

1.2 CASP Systematic Review Checklist

It also contains ten questions that help authors make sense of systematic reviews. This systematic literature review checklist also consists of three main issues. First, whether the results of a systematic review are valid, what are its results, and what is the application of results in local settings? It includes the following questions:

  • Did the review discuss the focused research questions?
  • Are all the papers involved in a review credible?
  • Do you think a review contains all necessary and relevant studies?
  • Did the author effectively access the quality of the information in the selected studies?
  • If yes, whether the author extracted results after combining reviews, was it a good practice?
  • What are the final results of a review?
  • Are results precise?
  • Can results apply to local settings?
  • Did the author consider all important outcomes?
  • Are the benefits outweighing the harm or cost?

1.3 CASP Qualitative Studies Checklist

Like other research methods, the CASP tool checklist includes ten questions for appraising qualitative analysis. The questions included in this checklist are as follows:

  • Were the aims of the research clear?
  • Is the author used the correct qualitative method?
  • Has the relationship between participants and researcher been adequate?
  • Was the author conducted research by keeping in mind the ethical issues?
  • Were the data analysis and interpretation significantly rigorous? 
  • Is the author summarising all findings of the research in a clear statement?
  • Will the research benefits humankind or society?

1.4 CASP Diagnostic Study Checklist

The CASP Diagnostic Test Study Checklist contains the following questions:

  • Was there a comparison with suitable reference standards?
  • Did all patients participate in the diagnostic test study and reference standard?
  • What are the results? 
  • How satisfied are you with the test results?
  • How sure are you about the authenticity of the diagnostic test results?
  • Can you find the same result by applying the diagnostic test to the patients in your area?  

1.5 CASP Cohort Study Checklist

The CASP tool checklist for the Cohort study contains the following questions:

  • Does the research question of a cohort study clear?
  • Has an author explored all-important confounding factors involved in a study?
  • Was the author completed the subject follow-up?
  • What are the results of a cohort study?
  • Are results precise?
  • Are results trustworthy?
  • Whether results apply to a local setup?

1.6 CASP Economic Evaluation Checklist

Questions in the CASP tool checklist for Economic Evaluation are as follows:

  • Were research questions clear?
  • Whether the author provides a comprehensive description of the completing alternatives?
  • Does the economic paper provide evidence about the effectiveness of the program? 
  • Were consequences and costs of an intervention adjusted for different times in a medical setup?
  • What are the results of the economic evaluation?
  • Will the program be helpful in the local step? 

1.7 CASP Clinical Prediction Rules (CPR ) Checklist 

The CASP tool checklist for Clinical Prediction Rules is as follows:

  1. Did the sample or population from which CPR derived was adequate?
  2. Did the researcher tests the Clinical Prediction Rules in different patient groups?
  3. Was the researcher evaluated the predictor variable and outcomes in a blinded fashion?
  4. Were the researcher estimated outcomes and predictor variables in an initially selected sample?
  5. Did the author clearly describe the statistical methods he/she used to construct and validate the CPR?
  6. Did the researcher calculate the performance of the rule?
  7. How precisely the author describes the effects of treatment?
  8. Whether the clinical prediction rules reliable and capable of producing interpretable results in local patients?
  9. Is the rule acceptable in a given case?   

2. Limitations of CASP tool:

CASP tool is one of the most important critical appraisal tools and is a good tool to measure transparency in reporting research practices. Nevertheless, it is relatively less important in measuring research design and conducting transparency. 

Final thoughts:

The Critical Appraisal Skill Programme tool helps nursing and healthcare researchers in appraising the main quality of the different research methodologies. These methodologies include Cohort Studies, Case-Control Studies, Economic Evaluation, Randomised Controlled Trials, Diagnostic Studies, Systematic Reviews, Clinical Prediction Rule, and Qualitative studies. All questions in the CASP checklist focus on results validation, reliability, and their value in a particular clinical setting. Apart from all, the researcher does not entirely rely on prompt questions in the CASP checklist. These questions aim to give direction to your thinking. 

About Author: Tyler Archer is a most famous leader in academic writing in the UK who has written thousands of academic papers, and will provide you with the academic paper you need. Expertise in top dissertation writing, Dissertation Proposal help, master dissertation writing and assignment writing services in the UK.

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