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Table 3 Summary of quality scores for empirical studies (n = 3)

From: A systematic review of the literature on ethical aspects of transitional care between child- and adult-orientated health services

  Racine et al., 2013 Larivière-Bastien et al., 2013 Affdal et al., 2015
1. Abstract and titlea Good Fair: Abstract not structured but this could be because of the style of the journal. Key ethical constructs not mentioned Good
2. Introduction and aimsa Good: Reasoned ethical argument and clear aim Fair: Research questions clear but introduction not a systematic summary of the background literature Good
3. Method and dataa Poor: Qualitative interview and questionnaire mentioned but no subsequent mention of questionnaire. Questionnaires/ interview schedule not included Poor: Ostensively this is a study about ethics and the researchers have taken an inductive approach but present a deductive structure for their paper, even criticising themselves for generating hypotheses rather than confirming or refuting. Questionnaires/ interview schedule not included Poor: The method did not fit with the aim of the study. Adolescents were not interviewed regarding their autonomy. No detail of analytic approach given
4. Samplinga Very poor: Description of sample but nothing about appropriate sample size or sampling strategy Very poor: Description of sample but nothing about appropriate sample size or sampling strategy Poor: Sampling strategy is absent. Very few participant details are given
5. Data analysisa Fair: Description of method but no respondent validation or triangulation Fair: Description of method but no respondent validation or triangulation Very poor: No details of the analytic approach are provided
6. Ethics and biasa Poor: Ethical approval for the study gained. Issues of confidentiality, approach to gaining consent to participate not mentioned although reader referred to more details about methodology in another paper. Relationship between researcher and participants not discussed Poor: Ethical approval for the study gained but not sure from where. Issues of confidentiality, approach to gaining consent to participate not mentioned although reader referred to more details about methodology in another paper. Relationship between researcher and participants not discussed Very poor: No reference is made to ethical permissions. Issues of confidentiality, approach to gaining consent to participate not mentioned
7. Findings/resultsa Good Good Fair
8. Transferability/ generalizabilityab Poor: Poor description of context. Poor score in 4 Poor: Poor description of context. Poor score in 4 Poor: Poor score in 4
9. Implications and usefulnessa Fair: Some suggestions for changing practice and transition programs. No implications for further research Fair: Some suggestions for changing practice. Mentions focus for further research Fair: No suggestions for future research given
Total (out of 36) 25 23 22
  1. aGood = 4, Fair = 3, Poor = 2, Very Poor = 1
  2. bIn order to score  Good or Fair score for transferability/generalizability, the paper should score Good or Fair for question 4 (Sampling).