The American Association of Nurse Anesthetists Journal (Feb. 2000) published the results of a study on the use of herbal medicines before surgery. Of 500 surgical patients randomly selected for the study, 51% used herbal or alternative medicines (e.g., garlic, ginkgo, kava, fish oil) against their doctor’s advice prior to surgery.
a. Do the 500 surgical patients represent a population or a sample? Explain.
b. If your answer was “sample” in part a, is the sample representative of the population? If you answered “population” in part a, explain how to obtain a representative sample from the population.
c. For each patient, what variable is measured? Are the data collected quantitative or qualitative?