Date of Award

2014

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Nursing (MSN)

First Advisor

Janie Carlton

Abstract

Patient education is a core component to the practice of nursing in many countries, including the United States. Emergency department nurses are often overwhelmed with the number of patients they must care for in short amounts of time. The patients are often in varying stages of evaluation and treatment, and the nurse may be involved in one-on-one interventions with these patients. This can leave little time for patient education, especially if the nurse does not feel like the patient education is meaningful or useful. Various factors can influence the ability and desire of the emergency department nurse to provide proper patient education. This research study examined these factors in relation to the emergency department nurses' experience and educational levels. Surveys were sent out to 99 emergency department nurses in the Carolinas and Georgia, with 31 surveys being returned. While there was not sufficient response to approach a significance level of 95%, the trends did indicate that nurses felt that time was a limiting factor to patient education. Other limiting factors included lack of patient interest and lack of follow-up systems. Nurses also felt that patients do not try to change their habits or lifestyles based on the nurses' educational interventions.

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