Research is the planned process in which information or resources are collected. Research can be seen as an investigation into a study regarding materials and sources in order to gain knowledge and facts. Many organisations have research as an essential tool, though it is exceptional in the health and social care industry and can take days, months and even years to develop some research. The aim is to identify information which we do not know yet and find out the information which is already known to people, through research people can have a better understanding of what service users needs and find ways of improving the service and care towards them. Data can be collected for research which must always be up to date and evaluated or checked frequently, this can help by making comparisons to other pieces of information which has been found.
There are many different functions of research which include developing new ideas and expanding knowledge; Research can be used to develop ideas which have already been produced but still need work to be done, research can assist and guide professionals or other people to create groundbreaking ideas. By developing new or improving ideas, resources and equipment which we already have is able to greatly improve and will have the potential to save lives. For example, in a Health and Social Care setting, healthcare professionals have the ability to improve medicine which could cure different illness or disease which can save the lives of many, By finding any new information which was gathered by research could help identify needs of certain individuals, if an individual was admitted to a hospital their background would be on file which would contain information on their past and current physical condition, this will assist and guide the healthcare professionals to give an insight on someone’s life, this relevant and up to date information can help the healthcare professionals in further investigation. The professional would be able to make different options for the type of treatment or care options that the individual needs in order to meet their individual needs. This links to identifying needs which is another function of research.
Identifying needs is important in day to day life but it is essential in Health and Social Care practices; Research can help find out which treatments work better for service users as an individual, research plays an important role in discovering new treatments or methods and ensuring that we use existing treatments in the best possible ways. Research can also find answers to things that are unknown, filling gaps in our knowledge and changing the way that healthcare professionals work. Another function of research is to prove theorists theories; Information that professionals find is extremely important and can be used to support or prove a theorists theory. A theory is a collection of ideas which are found to explain something, the theory could be used to justify, explain or account for a situation. Research can be used in multiple ways to source different pieces of information, some professionals may use experiments in a lab or through physical/ mental experiments on people, reading through books or looking online for studies, statistics or other key sources of information.