Nurses’ knowledge regarding pain management in high acuity care units: A case study of Palestine
Background: Most patients who have been hospitalized at some point in time must have experienced a measure of pain despite improvements in health-care systems. Globally, there is a dearth in information with regard to pain management. Pain management is an essential process for nurses because they spend most time of the day with the patients. Therefore, nurses’ level of knowledge and positive attitudes toward pain management reflect this vital and significant role played by nurses in critical care units.
Aims: The aims of this are to evaluate the level of knowledge and attitude of nurses regarding pain management in high acuity care units of Palestine.
Methods: For this cross-sectional descriptive study, data were obtained from seven hospitals in Palestine. Nurses were recruited from high acuity care units, including nurses from the medical and surgical wards. Their knowledge on the degree of pain was measured using the survey for “Knowledge and Attitudes Survey Regarding Pain.”
Results: About 123 nurses took part in the survey. The total mean score of correct answers for the 39 questions asked was 17.4 ± 4.2, which is considered to be less than the pass mark of 19.5. There were no statistically significant differences between the nurses’ total average score and demographic characteristics, except for their initial level of education.
Conclusions: The results of this study showed that Palestinian nurses in critical care units possess inadequate knowledge about pain management. Furthermore, there are inconsistencies in their attitudes and practices which require further research. There is a need for the council of health professionals to lay emphasis on pain management through continuous training and enlightenment of nurses to equip them with more knowledge and positive attitudes toward pain management.
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