Research at the bedside makes a difference for our patients, and also for our nurses. However, it is now time to broaden our focus from research on interventions or events at a narrow point in time to research that addresses care across the continuum. This continuum may start at the point of injury, such as the battlefield through en route care delivered during the 8000-mile journey home for our wounded warriors, or for critically ill patients as they move between the emergency department, operating room, and intensive care unit. This focus also requires researchers to consider “care within context,” that is, research- and evidence-based practice tailored to the unique conditions of the care environment. Beyond conducting research and developing new knowledge is the challenge of translating evidence into practice. A culture of inquiry is a critical element in the successful translation of evidence into practice. In a culture of inquiry, nurses are encouraged to question and evaluate their practice, provide evidence-based care, and actively participate in and lead clinical inquiry. This article draws from a program of applied clinical research reflecting care across the continuum within both military and civilian health care settings and discusses how the application of these research findings and the advancement of a culture of inquiry make a difference for both patients and nurses.

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