Issues in Research

 Regulatory, Legal, Ethical, and Accreditation Issues in Research

As highlighted in Chapter 9 of your course text, three research methods are available (descriptive, analytic, and evaluative). Discuss these methods and give one example of how each would be used when conducting research using homeless individuals as subjects. Analyze regulatory, accreditation, ethical, and legal issues and challenges related to each research method.

Your initial contribution should be 250 to 300 words in length. Your research and claims must be supported by your course text and at least one other scholarly source. Use proper APA formatting for in-text citations and references as outlined in the Writing Center.



Hi Everyone,

Welcome to our second discussion for week 4!

Many people leave off the details regarding regulations, legal, ethical and accreditation in this discussion, often because they don’t understand what these terms mean to the healthcare industry.  It is important that you know these terms as they are a daily aspect of working in the healthcare industry.

Regulations – regular standards – are usually created by the industry and may or may not be based on and enforced through laws. These standards are followed across the industry because of past success in doing so.  Regulatory bodies are organizations that oversee certain elements within or the entire business method.  An example can be seen in the way nursing homes document details in patient records.   As our book states, “the nursing home industry is highly regulated in almost every department, including nursing, dietary, maintenance, and housekeeping” (Burkholder & Nash, 2013, Section 8.1, para. 9).  Each of these is overseen by a regulatory body because they are expected to follow specific standards of practice.  In nursing, documentation of everything done to a resident and any accidents that may occur is required.  In dietary departments, foods cooked, diets patients are required to get, amounts served, amounts not eaten by a patient are details that are collected and documented.  Each of these departments has regulations because they ensure patient safety and well-being.

Legal and ethical behavior is a huge topic.  Laws are enacted at the community, state and federal levels.  Laws tell agencies how they must operate and provide minimum standards for doing so. Can you have legal behavior that is unethical?  Absolutely!  Many of the laws are written in a manner that creates loopholes that allow someone to do something that is not technically illegal.  Ethical behavior should address these loopholes but that is often and regularly tested.

Ethical behavior has a basis in morality; consider what behaviors need to be in place to treat the people who use the service well. This is essentially a set of best practices.

Accreditation is both a status and a process.  As a status, accreditation provides public notification that an institution or program meets standards of quality set forth by an accrediting agency.  As a process, accreditation reflects the fact that, in achieving recognition by the accrediting agency, the institution or program is committed to self-study and external review by one’s peers in seeking not only to meet standards but to continuously seek ways in which to enhance the quality of education and training provided (American Psychological Association, 2014, p. 1).

Accreditation means the organization meets not only basic standards set by regulations and laws, but also meets best-practice standards set by the industry.  When you create your discussion post, consider what kind of accrediting bodies oversee research organizations and what types of best-practices are expected of organizations who receive an accreditation for research.

When answering the questions be sure to use your critical thinking skills, be sure to use and cite references to give your response merit.  Also, be sure to respond to at least two peers.

Here is to a great discussion.

Dr. Rebecca



American Psychological Association. (2014).  What is accreditation? (Links to an external site.)  Retrieved from:

Burkholder, D. and Nash, N. (2013). Special populations in health care. San Diego, CA: Bridgepoint Education, Inc.

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