Freed, G.L., Andreae, M.C., Cowan. A.E., & Katz, A.M. (2002). The process of public policy formulation: the case of thimerosal in vaccines. Pediatrics, 109(6), 1153-1159.
The article under consideration is taken from the PsycArticles database. The main idea of the article is to consider the safety concerns and public reaction in the relation to newly developed immunization vaccines, thimerosal in particular.
The article under discussion does contain an abstract. It prevents a reader from understanding a research problem, participants, research design, and results. A reader is unable to get the main idea of the research at first glance.
The requirements for writing an introduction are not met. There is no thorough literature review in the introduction. Only one source is cited in the introduction that allows us to make a conclusion that background research is poorly conducted. This source is up-to-date (it is necessary to pay attention to the fact that the research paper was written in 2002). The introduction states the purpose of the research clearly, but the hypothesis is not addressed. However, alternative opinions can be discerned.
The methods section is too short to provide all the necessary information to the reader. Having read the methods section, it is possible to know that over 15 individuals were interviewed. The demographical information about selected subjects is not represented as well as the way how they were chosen. The authors of the research mention the names of those interviewees who allowed their names to be published. However, it is possible to get to know that only people who have a direct relation to immunization and other governmental agencies were selected. This is the only information that can be considered from the discussed section. The authors do not provide a list of the asked questions which makes it impossible to repeat the research. The information about the methods for received data interpretation is not covered as well. Thus, it can be concluded that the methods section is uncompleted with much information to be missed.
The results section is organized chronologically with the purpose to help the reader consider the main process that led to a statement on thimerosal made by joint American Academy of Pediatrics and US Public Health Service (Thimerosal in vaccines, 1999). The authors combined the results with the instances of the literature review (I suppose it is made to clarify why some of the subjects made particular choices) that made the consideration of the results too difficult. The results section contains three tables, but the information there is supportive and does not reflect the research results. These tables are discussed in the paper and can be interpreted as “stand-alone”. The results section provides the information which was considered while the research.
The discussion section considers the research results with the reference to the information considered previously. The authors make their discussion argumentative and convincing. The recommendations highlighted in the paper are drawn from the results of the interview. The authors try to be critical and reasonable. Making recommendations in this section, the authors support their ideas. The discussion section points at the main limitations of the research which make the research useless. In addition, using Plotkin’s (2000) quotes, the authors failed to interview him as one of those who have an attitude to the research question.
In conclusion, it should be stated that the report structure is dissatisfactory, due to this, such information is missed. I cannot say that the research is worthwhile as most of the data can be considered by means of the literature review, without attracting other people and interviewing them.
Freed, G.L., Andreae, M.C., Cowan. A.E., & Katz, A.M. (2002). The process of public policy formulation: the case of thimerosal in vaccines. Pediatrics, 109(6), 1153-1159. Web.
Plotkin, S.A. (2000). Preventing harm from thimerosal in vaccines [letter]. JAMA, 283, 2104–2105.
Thimerosal in vaccines: a joint statement of the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Public Health Service. (1999) MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep, 48, 563–565.